The Dream Center
1212 18th Street (Map)
Bakersfield, CA 93301
Phone: 661-636-4488
Fax: 661-636-4501

The Foster Youth Dream Center is a collaboration between the Kern County Network for Children, Foster Youth Services, local buisnesses, public agencies, non-profits and community members.

Dream Center Hours
Monday - Friday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
(excluding public holidays)

Every Kid Has A Dream...

The Kern County Network for Children (KCNC) working together with our community partners has created an innovative resource center for foster youth that serves as an easily accessible, inviting hub for comprehensive, integrated services and unique job training.

The Dream Center assists current and former foster youth transition to independence and self-sufficiency. Services utilize a formal case management system, with co-located staff from Kern County Probation, Kern High School District and our Department of Human Services Independent Living Program on-site and available to reduce the duplication of services and increase service accessibility for youth.

Dream Center Goals

  • Timely & appropriate school placement for foster youth.
  • Assist foster youth with advocating for their own needs.
  • Assist foster youth with completing their educational and/or vocational programs.
  • Assist foster youth with successfully transitioning to independent living and higher education, vocational job training programs, etc.
  • Weave together resources available through Kern�s Mental Health System of Care, Health System, Child Welfare Services, Probation, Schools, Employment Services, etc.
  • Provide an integrated and comprehensive linking and referral system.
  • Facilitate the integration of case management and supportive services among agencies and community-based organizations that cross systems.
  • Provide foster youth with opportunities to participate in and build informal support networks.
  • Provide foster youth with hands-on job training and experience operating a small business.
  • Invite foster youth to provide input in service delivery design, evaluation, and County policy development.

What's New!

  • Need your GED? Kern YouthBuild offers out-of-school youth, ages 17-22, another chance to earn a high school diploma & prepare for college & career! Interested? Follow the link to learn more & send in your application before July 8!
  • The Dream Center is now a Food Bank Pantry Site with CAPK Kern County Food Bank
  • The Independent Living Program's Summer Newsletter is here!
  • Bus Pass Policy
    If you are unable to get a bus pass at the Dream Center, you may go to the main DHS building at 100 E. California Ave (corner of Union and California). You go into the Social Services Lobby (The smaller lobby to the right of the main lobby as you are facing the building) from 2-4 p.m., Monday through Friday. Just tell the ladies at the desk you are an ILP youth thereto get a bus pass and they will call an ILP worker.

    Donate Your Items & Help A Foster Youth!

    When a foster youth emancipates, they often have very little when they move into their first home. The Dream Center helps ease the transition by providing youth with household items, personal hygiene items, clothing, baby items and furniture donated by the community. If you are interested in please check out this list of items we are now accepting at the Dream Center!

    Did You Know?

    The Dream Center also has an job incubator on site at the Dream Center Coffee Shop as well as employee emancipated foster youth who are trained to serve as paraprofessional case management advocates to help foster youth in need negotiate the educational and social service systems and achieve self-sufficiency.

    One of the key activities that takes place at the Dream Center/Coffee Shop is Project Independence which is a joint effort with the Kern High School District's Adolescent Career Training (ACT) program, Rotary of Bakersfield that utilizes United Way funds to teaching foster youth basic soft work skills and helping youth get placed at job sites. Once the youth is prepared to be linked to one of our private sector partners for employment, the ACT staff will place and provide oversight of the youth in one of our Project Independence participating business based on skills and what career path the youth desires.

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