The Dream Center is committed to a big mission. The organization works to provide resources and support that addresses homelessness, hunger, poverty, addiction, abuse, lack of education, and human trafficking. Support from organizations like LadyBoss® helps make that work possible.
The 4,000-square-foot Los Angeles-based Dream Center’s programs cost about $700,00 a month to run and are funded through donations from churches, ministries, individuals, and businesses, says Aaron Befort, Dream Center spokesman.
The center not only works in California but through its Dream Center Network, it also provides support to 84 other Dream Centers located in 29 states and 11 countries.
With more than 58,000 homeless living on the streets of Los Angeles, the Dream Center meets a huge need, Befort says. The center has served that population for more than 25 years and the need continues to grow.
“We try to help as much as we can,” Befort says. “We appreciate all the assistance we get.”
The center offers the following programs:
The Dream Center’s Discipleship recovery program is a one-year residential program designed to support men and women who are recovering from drug and alcohol addiction, depression, and abuse. The program provides free housing, food, education, and mentorship with the goal of eliminating distractions so participants can work to rebuild their lives.
The Dream Center’s Connections Program provides additional free support and structure to men and women who complete the Discipleship program.
The Dream Center’s Transitions Program helps men and women who complete the Connections program transition to independent living by helping them with job training and job search, apartment search, sober living, and counseling.
The Foster Youth program is designed to help youth who have aged out of the foster care system by providing additional educational training, job training, and mentorship.
The Transitional Housing Program for Homeless Families provides educational, vocational, and financial assistance to struggling families. The program focuses on building a strong foundation and provides opportunities for families to transition out with a healthy and sustainable future.
The Dream Center Veterans Program is a one-year residential program designed to help male and female veterans transition back to civilian life. The center works to help veterans develop positive social skills, build life skills, continue their education, learn to use veterans’ benefits, and find employment.
The Dream Center’s Human Trafficking Rescue and two-month Emergency Shelter provides emergency services including food and housing to adult female victims of domestic abuse, addiction, and human trafficking.
Helping people get their lives back on track is a major commitment, Befort says.
“LA has the largest homeless population in the world. The food need for the hungry never goes away,” he says.
One of the biggest challenges is helping youth who are emancipated from the foster system to help ensure they don’t end up homeless. Many don’t have a high school diploma or a GED, they lack job skills, and have no safety net because they don’t have a family. Without support, roughly 20 percent of youth who age out of foster care will end up homeless.
The Dream Center wants to prevent that from happening.
“We try to create a family and give them a place where they can acquire the skills they need to move out successfully on their own,” he says.
Since they started LadyBoss in 2014, the couple has donated more than $500,000 to charitable groups including:
Operation Underground Railroad, a non-profit that assists governments around the world in the rescue of human trafficking and sex trafficking victims, with a special focus on children.
Central New Mexico Community College, the state’s largest and premier community college delivers innovative programs with affordable degrees and certificates.
Feed NM Kids, which collects donations of nutritious snack items to provide to children in need with the end goal of ending childhood hunger in New Mexico.
The Rio Grande Food Project, which provides emergency food to the most vulnerable in the Albuquerque metro area.
Roadrunner Food Bank of New Mexico, which has been serving New Mexico’s hungry since 1980.
The Veterans Integration Center, which provides a wide range of services to veterans and their families with a focus on housing, food, education, and transportation.
“At LadyBoss, we’re committed to giving, not taking,” Brandon Poulin says. “Because we have been so blessed, we believe it is important to give back.”
You can help support The Dream Center by making a one-time or a recurring donation.