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The Dream Center is a Christian non-profit 501(c)(3) organization in Los Angeles, California, established in 1994.

Dream Center
DC Building Los Angeles.jpg
FounderMatthew Barnett
Tommy Barnett
FocusHealthcare, Development
Area served
Key people
Matthew Barnett
Tommy Barnett

The church ministers to the local homeless community, emancipated youth, gang members, addicts to drugs or alcohol, single mothers, struggling families, taggers, AIDS victims, and various subculture, ethnic and nationality groups. It feeds the homeless and others in need and runs a halfway house for released prisoners. Close to 500 people are housed at the center and receive rehabilitation. Many other services are offered each week to meet the spiritual and physical needs of the community. Since 2017, it has also operated a system of colleges, many of which have run into financial and regulatory trouble. [1]

The president of Dream Center is Matthew Barnett.



The organization was founded in 1994 with Matthew Barnett and Tommy Barnett, as a home missions project of the Southern California District of the Assemblies of God.[2] In 2001, Pastor Matthew Barnett and the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel merged the Dream Center with the Angelus Temple, with Pastor Barnett becoming the senior pastor over Angelus Temple as well as the Dream Center.

It is located at 2301 Bellevue Avenue in the Echo Parkneighborhood of Los Angeles, California, two miles from Downtown Los Angelesand a little over two miles from Hollywood. Based out of the former Queen of Angels Hospital at Bellevue and Waterloo Street, the facility consists of almost 400,000 ft² (37,000 m²) in buildings on 8.8 acres (36,000 m²) of prime commercial real estate.I

Associated Dream Centers have been established in other cities. Over 100 Dream Centers have been launched around the world.[3]


The Dream Center has a number of resources for both the community and people living in different states or countries. For the homeless they have a transitional family housing program, Skid Row outreach and a food chapel. They have a human trafficking program, with an emergency shelter and emergency hotline. For community outreach there is The Dream Center Academy, The Lord's Gym, Adopt-a-Block, a youth center, and the Worship Project. A food truck and food bank serve the hungry. Emancipating Youth Home program, foster care intervention, clothing outreach, a mobile medical clinic, an adult education program, and job placement and transition programs are available for youth. For people in recovery there are the men's and women's Discipleship live-in programs.

Purchase and failure of for-profit collegesEdit

In 2017, a subsidiary of the Dream Center, in partnership with a private equity fund, purchased the Art Institutes, South University, and Argosy University systems of for-profit colleges from Education Management Corporation.[4] The transaction received significant scrutiny, due to concerns about Dream Center's ability to successfully manage the acquired schools, and criticism that the transaction was designed to allow the schools to avoid increased regulation of for-profit colleges.[4] The transaction , which was not approved by the Department of Education under the Obama Administration, was approved in 2017 by Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. In 2019, a number of the art institutes and other colleges were closed, with some closures announced abruptly in the middle of the academic year.[5] Some of the Art Institute programs were transferred to Studio Enterprise, a Los Angeles creative arts training firm funded by principals of the private equity firm Colbeck Capital Management. [1]


According to BBC News, some Hurricane Katrina evacuees who stayed at the Dream Center felt like prisoners.[6] In response to the complaints several social activists, led by Ted Hayes, an advocate for the homeless, called a news conference demanding an investigation of the Dream Center. After visiting the Dream Center, however, and being given a tour of the facility, the activists concluded that the accusations were groundless. "There is no basis to the complaints we've heard," Hayes said, "The horror stories reported to us do not exist."[7]


  1. ^ a b Cowley, Stacy; Green, Erica L. (March 7, 2019). "A College Chain Crumbles, and Millions in Student Loan Cash Disappears". The New York Times. Retrieved March 15, 2019.
  2. ^ ROBERT CROSBY, A Dream of a Center: 'A Model for Faith-based Organizations',, USA, August 15, 2011
  3. ^ Dream Center Network, DREAM CENTER NETWORK MEMBERS,, USA, Retrieved November 3, 2018
  4. ^ a b Moore, Daniel (September 20, 2017). "EDMC sale gets initial blessing from U.S. Department of Education".
  5. ^ Sun, Deedee. "Students loot Art Institute of Seattle classrooms as school suddenly shuts down". Kiro7. Kiro7. Retrieved 2019-03-12.
  6. ^ Wells, Matthew (September 18, 2005). "Katrina challenge for LA mission". BBC News. Retrieved 20 September 2012.
  7. ^ Sahagun, Louis (September 17, 2005). "No Nightmare Seen at the Dream Center". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 14 December 2013.

External linksEdit