About Independence Through GRACE Foundation
Independence Through GRACE Foundation (ITG) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that was established in Bakersfield, California in 2012 to help adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities to grow in independence through a variety of programs and services.
We envision a better world in which adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities are valued as whole persons able to contribute to the flourishing of their communities, so our faith-based programs empower participants to see themselves as valuable contributors to their community. All ITG programs are personalized for each individual participant in order to help them move toward independence and community integration.
See the Value
We choose to see the God-given value in every person, and look at life with positivity and hope.
Be Diversely You
Everyone can contribute to their community when differences are cherished and respected. We see differences as a strength, not a weakness.
Dream Big, Work Hard
We believe that big dreams paired with hard work have the power to bring us farther than we think possible.
Stand in the Gaps
When our participants experience gaps in existing systems, we dare to become the bridge that leads them to success.
Do it Together
We can go further and do things better if we do it together. We embrace community within our organization, cities, nation, and world.
Limitless is a microenterprise development program that equips and empowers business owners with diverse abilities. We partner with entrepreneurs to help them with the services and resources they most need: from writing a business plan to branding and marketing their business to offering necessary equipment and office space.
We started an enrichment program to fulfill a need in our community.
Catherine and Grover Waldon’s youngest son Trevor, now in his mid-thirties, is developmentally delayed. As Trevor grew closer to adulthood and completed high school, they searched for programs in Bakersfield that would enrich Trevor’s life. They wanted a place where he could make friends and feel empowered to be as independent as possible. Unable to find a program that suited Trevor, Catherine & Grover developed an enrichment program (GRACE) that was launched in October 2016.
Trevor finds great satisfaction in working at a local car dealership where he currently keeps inventory. Trevor completes his job duties on his own, and is supported by a job coach. Through Trevor’s experience working with the support of a customized employment agency (New Options), the Waldons met Mike Butler, the current Executive Director at ITG. Independence Through GRACE Foundation and Mike’s nonprofit, Limitless Micro-Enterprise Development, Inc, had such compatible missions that in 2022, the two organizations joined forces and Limitless became a program under the ITG umbrella. New Options, Trevor's employment service provider, followed soon after. Now the three programs--GRACE, Limitless, and New Options--are all housed at ITG, and our participants have the opportunity to participate in the programs most interesting to them. Only God knows what’s in store for Independence Through GRACE Foundation, but our team has high aspirations for future expansions and growth. Our dream is to be a one-stop-shop for all things related to intellectual and developmental disabilities in Bakersfield, and to offer even more online resources for parents whose children receive diagnosis, small business owners with diverse abilities, and others who have or love someone with diverse abilities. Please consider joining us on our journey to create a better world: a world in which adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities are valued as whole persons able to contribute to the flourishing of their communities.