Public libraries provide critical resources to some of Kern County’s most vulnerable residents on a daily basis. Because overdoses can occur anywhere, it’s appropriate for staff working in public spaces such as a public library, be trained to administer and distribute Narcan, just as they would learn how to operate other emergency equipment such as fire extinguishers.  

The Library is proud to join local efforts championed by Kern Behavioral Health & Recovery Services (KernBHRS) in becoming a naloxone (commonly known by the brand name Narcan) distributing organization by providing free Narcan to residents at our libraries throughout the County. KernBHRS provided training to library staff on the administration and distribution of Narcan. 

Since 2019, Drug Free Kern in partnership with KernBHRS, began distributing Narcan doses in in our area. Since then, there have been over 5,514 Naloxone kits distributed to the community and over 721 successful overdose reversals reported by partners throughout Kern County participating in the Naloxone Distribution Project.

“Libraries are a trusted community hub where vulnerable populations come for all sorts of services and referrals. Many of our libraries are located in areas most impacted by opioid overdose and this partnership allows our organization to provide a life-saving tool to residents experiencing an opioid overdose,” states Andie Sullivan, Director of Libraries.

Narcan is a critical tool in the public health response to the opioid crisis and has no harmful effects if given to someone who is not experiencing an overdose. Narcan distribution programs have been shown to decrease opioid-related overdose fatalities nationwide.

Narcan is now available for distribution at each of our 22 County libraries. Patrons may ask a library team member for more information. A brief form is required. KernBHRS and the Library will track the amount of Narcan distributed at libraries and use the information to combat overdoses in Kern County. 
For more information on this partnership, please visit or
Bakersfield Locations: 

Baker Branch Library 
Beale Memorial Library 
Holloway-Gonzales Branch Library 
Northeast Branch Library 
Rathburn Branch Library 
Southwest Branch Library 
Wilson Branch Library 

Countywide Locations: 

Arvin Branch Library
Boron Branch Library 
Buttonwillow Branch Library 
California City Branch Library 
Delano Branch Library 
Frazier Park Branch Library 
Kern River Valley Branch Library 
Lamont Branch Library 
McFarland Branch Library 
Mojave Branch Library 
Ridgecrest Branch Library 
Rosamond Branch Library 
Taft Branch Library 
Tehachapi Branch Library 
Wasco Branch Library 

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