A Success Story to Inspire Nonprofits to Apply for Kern Community Foundation’s Jumpstart Fundraising TA Grant

“Jumpstart” is a competitive grant opportunity made available to Kern County nonprofits thanks to a public-private partnership between Kern Community Foundation and fundraising technology and training giant Network for Good (NFG), with generous funding support from the Kern County Board of Supervisors.

The program allows five Kern nonprofits–one from each County Supervisorial District–the opportunity to receive 12 months of fundraising technical assistance and easy-to-use software from NFG at a greatly subsidized cost.

Jumpstart is designed to help Kern’s nonprofits work smarter, not harder, by building upon the important fundraising work they have already begun through Give Big Kern and other efforts. The program weds the high-touch nurturing and cultivation of long-term relationships with individual donors to the high-tech use of donor development software, in order to help charities diversify and expand general operating dollars.

Our application period for Jumpstart 2020 is currently open through 5 p.m. Monday, November 25, 2019.

Click here to read a success story from 2019 participant, Independence Through GRACE, which more than doubled its Give Big Kern fundraising from 2018 ($20,000) to 2019 ($49,000) after they implemented lessons learned from their Jumpstart Fundraising Coach. In the article, you will also find useful links to a slide presentation on Jumpstart and to Kern Community Foundation’s Online Grants Platform so you can get started with your application. Questions? Please write to or call 661.616.2603.

Links for Life Seeks Part-Time Outreach Coordinator

Links for Life, a breast cancer support, education and services organization serving Bakersfield and Kern County, seeks a part-time Outreach Coordinator to work under the general direction of the Executive Director to strengthen the organization’s community relations, volunteer networks, and outreach. This position is non-exempt, with a 20-25 hours-per-week workload. Spanish/English bilingual written/oral skills preferred. Click here to view job description and find out how to apply.

Jumpstart Fundraising Technical Assistance Grant – RSVP for a FREE Informational Town Hall Meeting Coming Up Oct. 24!


That’s how much funding IN NET-NEW DOLLARS FROM INDIVIDUAL DONORS nonprofits that graduate from the Jumpstart Fundraising Technical Assistance Grant Program are raising, on average, at the end of the 12-month training period!

Some Kern County nonprofits enrolled in Jumpstart since January of this year have already raised more money than they did in all of 2018!

This could be you!

Jumpstart is a fundraising technical assistance program that strengthens Kern County nonprofits by giving them access to hands-on coaching and the use of state-of-the-art fundraising software for one year at a greatly reduced tuition cost, thanks to generous funding from the Kern County Board of Supervisors.

The program helps to ensure participants’ sustainability by teaching them the skills to nurture and cultivate long-term relationships with individual donors, with a view toward diversifying funding streams and expanding unrestricted, general operating dollars that are not program-limited like grant funding.

Jumpstart is administered by fundraising technology and training giant Network for Good. In 2020, Kern Community Foundation will once again make the program available through a competitive grant opportunity open to Kern County Nonprofits that have not participated in Jumpstart in the past.

Join us to learn about whether your Kern County Nonprofit qualifies and how you can apply online through Kern Community Foundation.

RSVP Now to Attend Our Oct. 24 Informational Grant Workshop (A.M. and P.M. Options Available). Space is Limited!

The workshop will be held Thursday, Oct. 24, in the 3rd Floor Multipurpose Room of the Kern County Administrative Building, 1115 Truxtun Ave., Bakersfield, CA 93301.

Click here to register for the 9 – 11 a.m. Workshop (Check-in begins at 8:30 a.m.)

Click here to register for the 1 – 3 p.m. Workshop (Check-in begins at 12:30 p.m.)


We recommend that you park in the city’s public parking lots south of the railroad tracks on N Street near 14th Street. There is street parking along and north of Truxtun Avenue as well; but please be mindful of time restrictions to avoid ticketing.

Questions? Contact or 661.616.2603.

Kern Community Foundation Awards Close to $115,000 in East Kern Earthquake Disaster Relief Grants

It is exactly three months to the day since the first of three large earthquakes and countless aftershocks struck Ridgecrest, China Lake, and surrounding areas, causing damage to local homes, businesses and government installations, and displacing entire families who continue to struggle to this day.

Fortunately, thanks to the generosity of Kern County’s giving community and key philanthropic partners, Kern Community Foundation recently awarded $114,875 to eight nonprofit agencies from donations received through the Foundation’s Kern County Earthquake Disaster Relief Fund, which KCF established within 24 hours of the massive 7.1 quake that reverberated throughout Kern the evening of July 5.

More than 90 percent of donations were large gifts of $10,000 to $50,000 received from Berry Petroleum Company, Mojave Pistachios, W.A. Thompson Distributing Company, and The California Endowment. Smaller gifts were received from a number of generous community members.

Grants were awarded in late September through a competitive application process, and range between $1,500 and $28,000. Moneys will help the following nonprofit agencies with ongoing earthquake relief activities as well as facilities repairs:

  • High Desert Lighthouse Ministries: $28,000
  • The Salvation Army Ridgecrest Corps: $28,000
  • Women’s Center High Desert: $28,000
  • Desert Area Resources and Training: $11,476
  • China Lake Museum Foundation: $10,000
  • Mission Community Services Corp. (MCSC) Kern Women’s Business Center: $6,399
  • Almost Eden Rescue: $1,500
  • Socks & Paws Animal Rescue: $1,500

“The needs of the Ridgecrest community were so varied and critical after this horrible event, it was simply mind-boggling,” said KCF Board Member Justin Leland, Director of Business Services for Moneywise Wealth Management, who participated in the grants evaluation and allocation committee. “By being able to take part in the grantmaking process, we had a window into the most pressing needs of the community through the compelling written testimonials of those people and organizations with boots on the ground. Personally,” he said, “I will forever be more mindful of the needs within a community after a natural disaster. It isn’t just buildings and property affected by these disasters but lives, community services and outreach, personal connections, and financial stress.”

Indeed, through their funding requests, grantees described how they found themselves facing such challenges as having to respond to a noticeable increase in domestic violence following the quakes; to scrambling to locate temporary lodging for displaced families; to helping those who were still housed with much-needed home repairs; to taking in runaway dogs that had gotten spooked by the combination of both the quakes and Fourth of July fireworks; to providing Small Business Administration workshops and services to help affected businesses get back on their feet; and many other dire circumstances.

Most grantees had to respond to community needs while taking care of the damages their own facilities had incurred. For that reason, the grant application included a section for applicants to detail lessons learned from the East Kern quakes with a view toward implementing emergency preparedness in the future. I got Priligy prescribed by my doctor since I usually came after 2-3 bumps, and I had hope for at least 3-5 minutes. Unfortunately, at the price at about 10 USD per tablet is quite a high one and you have to wait at least 1 hour until the effect occurs completely.

KCF President and CEO Kristen Beall Watson said, “In addition to providing critical resources to the communities impacted by the earthquakes, this process helps us identify gaps in the response continuum and design more proactive systems for meeting great needs.”

Donations can still be made to the Kern County Earthquake Disaster Relief Fund. Simply follow this link.

Bakersfield PAL Hiring Activity Leaders

The Bakersfield Police Activities League (PAL) is Hiring ACTIVITY LEADERS!

If you are an energetic and dedicated person who wants to be a role model to our local community’s youth, feel free to stop by Bakersfield PAL at 301 E. 4th Street, Bakersfield, CA 93307, and turn in your resume. Questions? Call 661.283.8880, or write to

The American Red Cross seeks Executive Director for its Kern County Chapter

The American Red Cross is currently seeking an Executive Director for its Kern County chapter, based in Bakersfield, California. This position involves little operational responsibility, and is an external-facing, community relations position, where the right individual will be able to inspire engagement and partnership with the Red Cross in the Kern County communities it serves. Click here for more details and to apply.

East Kern Earthquake Relief Grant Opportunity

Thanks to generous funding from our valued community partners, this one-time competitive grant opportunity is available to 501(c)(3) nonprofit agencies operating in Kern County that:
1) Are registered with Kern Community Foundation; and
2) Have a Silver or higher Transparency Rating on; and
3) Are involved in disaster relief efforts following the East Kern Earthquakes of July 4th and 5th, 2019; or
4) Have incurred earthquake damages that have compromised their ability to function and deliver services to the community at normal capacity.

To make emergency relief funding available as quickly as possible, the application period for this grant opportunity is brief: 12 a.m. Friday, August 16, through 5 p.m. Friday, August 30, 2019. The maximum award is $20,000. Visit our Available Grants page to get started: 

If you are unsure about any application prerequisites or have questions about this grant opportunity, please contact Director of Community Impact Louis Medina at 661.616.2603 or

Kern Nonprofits: Prepare to Apply for Philanthropy on Tap 2020 by Reading our FAQ Document

Philanthropy on Tap is a competitive “Visibility Grant” opportunity that Kern Community Foundation offers to Kern County nonprofits in partnership with the Greater Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce.

Designed as a “Guided Q & A” in a new format similar to a talk show beginning in 2020, and held in an informal setting with free drinks and hors d’oeuvres for the audience, Philanthropy on Tap showcases charitable organizations’ programs, leadership and needs to local business leaders and other members of the community. It is a great networking opportunity designed to raise the visibility of nonprofits, exposing them to potential donors, volunteers and advocates. It is part of Kern Community Foundation’s Nonprofit Strengthening Initiative and helps to fulfill the Foundation’s Mission: “Growing Community. Growing Philanthropy.”

Also beginning in 2020, we are switching to an every-other-month format for Philanthropy on Tap presentations. There will be a total of six events in Bakersfield, alternating between two popular venues on the first Tuesday of even-numbered months.

For a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Philanthropy on Tap that can help nonprofits prepare for applying during the next application period of August 1 – 30, 2019, in order to be featured in 2020, click here.