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  • Writer's pictureThe Bone Guys

30 Local Non-Profits Working Hard For a Better Future

Updated: Jun 23, 2020

Our world has its problems.

Fortunately, it’s easier than ever to be part of the solution.

There are a number of local non-profits that have been working to make our society a more just, livable, and equitable one for decades.

These organizations aren’t jumping on anybody’s bandwagon but actively toil hard to solve problems they have identified through specific actions.

Of course, they can all use your assistance in supporting their causes, whether it be donating or volunteering.

L.A. and O.C. non-profits are many in number. Below we’d like to tell you about a handful impacting the cities we live in.

We encourage you to explore and support the causes that you feel passionate about. As we all know, there’s work to be done to create the kind of society we all feel like being a part of.


Name: Homeless Not Toothless

Mission: A volunteer-based program founded in 1992 that finds dental professionals offering free services and care to foster youth, military veterans, low-income individuals and other Angelenos experiencing hardship or homelessness throughout more than 36 offices citywide.

Name: Operation Smile

Mission: An internationally lauded organization that offers free surgeries worldwide for children born with cleft lips and palates from doctors based around the globe.

Name: Children’s Dental Health Clinic

Mission: To provide economically disadvantaged kids and youth up to 21 years old in Long Beach and South Bay with oral health and complex medical treatments as well as education and dentistry training.



Name: Homeboy Industries

Mission: Founded by activist-priest Father Gregory Boyle over 30 years ago, Homeboy stands as the biggest and most lauded gang rehabilitation and re-entry program on earth, encompassing everything from tattoo removal, therapy and education to job training at Homeboy Bakery, Homeboy Silkscreen & Embroidery and Homegirl Café.

Name: Self Help Graphics & Arts

Mission: Boyle Height’s 47-year-old community organization supporting, developing and advancing Chicana/o and Latinx artists with an additional focus on social justice issues.

Name: The Trevor Project

Mission: The world’s largest suicide prevention and crisis intervention program for gay, lesbian, transgender, bisexual, queer and questioning youth.


Name: Imagine L.A.

Mission: A 14-year-old non-profit working to end cycles of homelessness and poverty in L.A. County through family case management and mentoring.


Name: Baby 2 Baby

Mission: Providing families in poverty with kids aged newborn to 12 years old with donated clothing, cribs, diapers, toys and other children’s necessities.

Name: No Us Without Them

Mission: Providing meals for the families of undocumented restaurant workers that form the backbone of our dining establishments, but are unable to collect government assistance in the wake of Covid-19.

Name: Project Ropa

Mission: A free mobile service delivering clean clothes, shower facilities and hygiene kits to homeless individuals in Venice, Downtown L.A. and Echo Park.

Name: L.A. Regional Food Bank

Mission: A 47-year-old institution fighting hunger in Los Angeles that serves over 60,400,000 meals annually.

Name: Midnight Mission

Mission: A 106-year-old shelter for those experiencing homelessness whose programs include emergency services, 12-step recovery, job training, education, family support services and workforce development.

Name: Chrysalis

Mission: For 35 years, the Skid Row-originated organization has provided case-by-case employment resources, job programs, and material resources for low-income and homeless individuals.

Name: Food Forward

Mission: To rescue surplus food that might be wasted and re-distribute it to over 1,800 food relief organizations across Southern California.


Name: A Place Called Home

Mission: Formed shortly after the 1992 uprising in South L.A., the community center offers a refuge for kids growing up in gang-heavy neighborhoods through arts and education programs, mentoring and counseling with the aim of providing them a healthy future. With its campus closed, it is currently concentrating on offering online support to kids as well as groceries, supplies and provisions to families.


Name: Para Los Niños

Mission: Founded 40 years ago in Skid Row, the organization now has multiple schools offering education, family services and workplace training to children aged 6 months to 24 years and their families.

Name: 9 Dots

Mission: Providing a computer-based curriculum and instilling a passion for problem-solving to students in grades K-6, with a focus on “students of color.”


Name: Libros Schmibros

Mission: A bilingual lending library and pro-reading organization based in Boyle Heights that also offers movies, workshops, classes, podcasts and field trips to any and all who are interested.

Name: 100 Black Men of Orange County

Mission: This local chapter of the national organization seeks to empower the African American community through financial literacy, technical education and economic self-sufficiency programs for youth and other residents of O.C.


Name: 826LA

Mission: Co-founded by novelist Dave Eggers, the national organization has chapters in nine cities that offer creative and expository writing tutors for under-resourced students aged 6-18. Many of the classrooms have attached stores offering zany gifts from adventures in time travelling like robot toupees and moon lamps.


Name: Inside Out Community Arts/P.S. Arts

Mission: Providing weekly arts education and theater-and-life skills to middle school students in underfunded L.A. schools.



Mission: Launched by musician Will.I.Am in 2009, the foundation seeks to provide young students with programs that help them secure college scholarships, prepare for college, and educate them in S.T.E.A.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) classes.

Name: School on Wheels

Mission: A 27-year-old Ventura-based organization providing tutors and mentors to children in grades K-12 who are experiencing homelessness or housing insecurity in Southern California.

Name: TXT

Mission: To mentor and educate young men between 7th and 11th grade from low-income communities in coding and start-up technology business development.


Name: Friends of the L.A. River

Mission: Creating and supporting an accessible and healthy environment in and around the 51-mile long L.A. River for all Angelenos to enjoy and be proud of.


Name: Amigos de los Rios

Mission: A 17-year-old non-profit working to create a network of parks, urban woodlands and green spaces in schools through the L.A. Basin to combat environmental destruction and increase public access.

Name: Climate Cents

Mission: A crowd-funded platform for sponsoring and enabling diverse local projects that reduce carbon in the atmosphere, including equipping neighborhoods with solar panels, restoring Santa Monica Bay’s kelp forests and planting a fruit orchard in South L.A.

Name: Ron Finley Project

Mission: The self-described “Gangsta Gardener” plans to open an urban garden in South L.A. that helps educate people in such areas as planting, nutrition, cooking, business management and sustainability, along with an engaging space for recreation.


Name: Grades of Green

Mission: A South Bay-born international outfit that is committed to mentoring youth with the aim of turning them into advocates for the environment in their schools and communities.

Name: Heal the Bay

Mission: A 35-year-old advocacy and activist group protecting L.A.’s coastline and waterways with an emphasis on protection, legislation, restoration, single use plastic reduction, and youth education.

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