The Bakersfield ARC (BARC) began in April 1949, when 13 local families wanted to provide hope and a normal life for their children who struggled because of developmental disabilities. These were parents who put their love into action and the end result was the beginning formation of the Bakersfield ARC (BARC).
Now, almost 67 years later, BARC has grown beyond the dreams of its original founders. The nonprofit organization has grown into a 25 acre industrial campus that serves over 400 developmentally disabled adults daily, through 10 building block programs.
The one-of-a-kind nonprofit is a true community innovator and job creator, BARC utilizes recycling as the foundation for revenues to create employment, work skills building and job training for these special adults with developmental and other disabilities.
The organization contributes back over $8.3 million in wages to the local economy through job creation for the disabled and non-disabled. For every dollar BARC receives it returns $13.08 of economic benefit back to the community. BARC assists over 250 disabled adults to earn a paycheck, gain independence and thereby reduce the financial burden on taxpayers.
The story below helps highlight how BARC can provide success to developmentally disabled adults while positively impacting the community through acceptance of these individuals as role models for all to follow.
On July 11, 2005 the Bakersfield Californian carried a featured article about one of BARC’s developmentally disabled adults who had gone through BARC’s supportive employment program and was placed into employment with Dryer’s Ice Cream. The title of the article read “The Perfect Worker.” The article revealed the endless possibilities of success when individuals with developmental disabilities are provided with opportunity. “Melvin Hayes hasn’t missed a day in his 16 years at Dreyer’s… he never had an accident and passed up a chance to make a connection with a smile and a friendly word. I wish I had a thousand (employees) like him – with his attitude and spirit, said the Operations Business Unit Manager Jim Eddleman.”
Today, Melvin has gone 27 years without missing one day and continues to be the “Perfect Worker” and he was recently recognized by his peers and management at the Nestle-Dreyers Ice Cream Company for his years of incredible service, dedication, and perfect attendance. It was through lengthy BARC education and training that helped mold Melvin into the “Perfect Worker.” BARC wishes to produce many more individuals just like Melvin who only need the opportunity to gain the education and skill level required to be employed at an excellent company like Nestle-Dreyers Ice Cream Company.