May was a busy month for Covenant Community Services and Covenant Coffee. May 7th marked the tenth anniversary of the coffee house opening at 1700 North Chester Ave., in Bakersfield, California. This date marks much more than a brick-and-mortar opening of a business; it was the launch of the Headquarters of Hope, or HQ of Hope.
We called the building and initiative the HQ of Hope since it stands proudly in Oildale, California, as a beacon of hope, love, and good deeds. Since 2012, Covenant Coffee has used the old Bank of America art-deco to warehouse, roast, brew, and sell specialty coffee. We didn’t get the building only to sell coffee. It is also used as the HQ of our social services arm. You can find more information about Covenant Community Services at www.covenantcs.net.
So why the coffee company? The reason for the coffee company is to mentor, train, and employ foster youth. We stole the motto, “We drink all we can and sell the rest” from friends in the industry. In actuality, we use coffee as a means to then end of disciplining and mentoring youth to restore lives and transform generations.
In addition to celebrating our tenth anniversary, Covenant held a few special events. The last event was a brunch and tour at the Ablin home designed and built by famed architect Frank Llyod Wright. It was a wonderfully breezy and sunny Bakersfield morning that entertained a sold-out crowd of 40 guests. The purpose was to raise awareness and funds for the work of Covenant and the plight of foster youth leaving the system. Below is a video recap of the event. We will share another post about the rest of May soon.
Key Stats you want to know:
- Over 400,000 children are in foster care in the United States
- Over 20,000 youth “age out” of the child welfare system each year
- An average of 1 out of every four youth in foster care will become homeless within four years of aging out of foster care.
- Only half of former foster youth will be employed at the age of 24
- Nationwide, only about half of the youth raised in foster care finish high school. And less than 3% graduate from a 4-year college
- On average, 4 out of every five children and adolescents enter foster care with severe mental health issues
Be the Hope
By getting involved, you can help change the stats and end the cycle of domestic violence, behavioral health, unemployment, homelessness, helplessness, and generational poverty and abuse. Mentor a youth. Buy coffee and help employ youth. Teach a life-skills class. Do something to encourage youth to change the patterns of negative behavior that lead to adverse outcomes.