The Contreras Foundation was initiated in 1984.
The Founders (Our Grandparents) began what was anticipated to be merely a family get together. Relatives at the time wanted to come together for more positive and optimistic occasions, rather than just funerals and weddings. In the 1980's they began these gatherings and got together more. As time went on and as more relatives came together, members within the family thought about putting money together and doing something for their community. Many of our relatives, since the beginning, have been military service men and women, educators, entrepreneurs, and involved in a number of other occupations here in Kern County.
Soon after other relatives came into the mixture, it was decided to make this growing group a non-profit organization. By the early 1990's, The Contreras Family Scholarship Fund (As it was called at the time) was formed and it gave $100.00 to one student from each high school in Kern County.
During the course of the 1990's, the organization launched with more members and like a Stock, it began to open its fundraising operations to the public. With additional fundraisers and responsiveness, the organization graduated itself from giving $100.00 per student to $500.00 a student.
Soon after 2002, our organization has grown to over 500 members. Now in 2017, The Contreras Foundation hosts New Year's Dance Benefits, Golf Tournaments, Horseshoe Tournaments, Fireworks Booths, we participate in the Adopt-A-Highway program (Highway Clean-Up), and host Youth events for children. We now distribute $1,000 per student. That is now two students per high school in Kern County.
In the manner of distribution, we have a committee of individuals that go to our local high schools in May. At that time we prefer our members to personally award students with their $1,000 scholarship. The Contreras Foundation awards $2,000 to each high school, two students per high school, and from there students attend Cal State Bakersfield, Bakersfield College, or any other institution outside of Kern County.
Today, we are known as The Contreras Foundation and are still growing. We are currently working to increase more financial assistance to students through our program and, hopefully, with additional community support, and financial backing, The Contreras Foundation will be able to give $5,000 per student. That is our goal.