Resource center coming to Arvin to help the vulnerable and homeless

April 7, 2022 /

The Arvin Navigation Center (ANC) will soon be coming to Arvin with resources that will be provided to those who are experiencing homelessness.

Christine Viterelli, City of Arvin Grant Writer, applied for the grant in December of 2021 to establish a homeless navigation center in Arvin. The ANC is currently being renovated and is set to open in the middle of May.

“The purpose of the center is to provide them with meals and to refer them to additional services that they need such as mental health services and help with shelter. It’s meant to be a navigation center where we can provide services to the homeless, and it is not an overnight shelter, but a resource center,” said Viterelli.

It will be a place where they can come in and receive any help that they need or use it as a place to relax such as watching tv or using silent disco headphones that will be provided. There will also be a bible study and other activities to do. 

Charlie Van De Voorde, Program Manager at Flood Ministries, states there will also be a simulated store with fake money to teach the homeless how to navigate into the billing cycle of paying money. The store would also provide clothes for the homeless.

Van De Voorde explains that when someone is homeless and they start receiving some type of income, it is hard to just let go of the money you just earned. The simulated store would be used as a way to help navigate the homeless into the billing cycle. 

Some other resources that will be provided at the ANC would include:

  • Meals
  • Dental services
  • Mental health and substance abuse services
  • Education
  • Mobile showers
  • Resume/ job training

The ANC will have dedicated rooms for physical exams, education, resume assistance, and activities such as bible studies. The mobile showers will be located outside, and dental services will be coming in weekly at the ANC.

The last process is to renovate the building. Flood Ministries is working on removing a wall to make the main room bigger, and Supervisor David Couch has donated money to renovate the location. 

Everyone in need of homeless assistance will be welcomed regardless of citizenship status.

“Our demographic right now is Arvin and Lamont communities,” said Van de Voorde. “I’d like it be known that community members that are undocumented does not mean they can not receive services there. There is a program called Rapid Re-Housing (RRH) that assists with undocumented to get into housing, so we are open to giving services to all.”

The ANC will have a total capacity of 42 and it will be a daytime drop-in from Monday to Friday between the hours of 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The hours of operation may be subject to change to a longer duration. ANC will be located at 204 S. Hill Street, Arvin, CA, 93203.

Erica Murillo

Erica Murillo is a project coordinator and reporter at South Kern Sol. She was born in Bakersfield, California, and her origin is from Guanajuato, Mexico. She is a first-generation graduate from California State University, Bakersfield where she earned a degree in Liberal Studies with a minor in English. Murillo's first job was working in the fields picking grapes. She has been able to evolve and continue to grow within her career. She can be reached at