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How can you help out in Los Angeles? We counted 23 ways.

There's no shortage of things to do in sunny Southern California. And that's also true when it comes to helping others and doing something good for the community.

But with so many different things to do, it can be a wee bit tricky to know where and how you can be most effective. After all, where do you even start?


Well, we took care of that for you by breaking down concrete ways to help along with actionable steps, so you, my friend, do not have to worry. Just run through our handy how-to guide that has a little something for everybody:

1. Express your artistic side and help others hone their craft.

Organizations such as Inner-City Arts and Piece by Piece give volunteers a chance to help students gain confidence and creativity through the magic of painting, crafting, writing, and other art forms.

2.  Adopt a new member of the family at the zoo.

Image via Ricky Li/Flickr.

From amphibians to invertebrates, all animals in the L.A. Zoo are available for adoption. You can't take them home, of course, but your contribution will allow the L.A. Zoo to join international conservation efforts geared toward protecting all endangered species from extinction.

3. Help put a roof over the heads of people in need.

More than 46,000 people in L.A. are homeless on any given night. Luckily, you can donate or volunteer at organizations, such as PATH and the Downtown Women's Center, to help staff support those in need and create affordable permanent housing.

4. Be a big brother or sister to the next generation.

Image via iStock.

Everyone needs someone to look up to — and that someone could be you. Get involved with organizations like Spark and 100 Black Men of Orange County and mentor a young person.

5. Have loads of fun improving the environment.

Image via iStock.

Creating more parks and planting more trees can be more fun than you think when you do them with People for Parks and the TreePeople. From volunteer photography to in-house research to getting your hands dirty, there's an opportunity for everybody.

6. Lend a helping hand to people with disabilities.

Image via iStock.

Provide one-on-one assistance and have loads of fun helping others at AbilityFirst. Or, if you're looking for a much bigger role, you can take training programs to help people with disabilities at the CSUN Center on Disabilities.

7. Discover the teaching side you never knew you had.

Image via iStock.

Whether it's showing young people the ropes on writing with 826LA or teaching young women the value of building with their hands at DIY Girls, you might surprise yourself with how good an educator you are.

8. Become your own champion of LGBTQ rights.

Image via iStock.

When LGBTQ youth need guidance or just someone to talk to, The Trevor Project is there. In fact, you could be the one answering their call.

9. Help homeless individuals get back on their feet.

Image via iStock.

Volunteers at Imagine LA and Chrysalis provide job training and mentorship and even throw fun family events geared toward getting people's lives back on track.

10. Make sure as many people as possible have a hot meal.

Image via iStock.

Whether it's helping distribute unclaimed food with The Manna Room or providing food for thousands of hungry citizens regularly through the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank, volunteers can fill up tummies and hearts at the same time.

11. Create access to safe water for people around the world.

Image via iStock.

783 million people worldwide still don't have access to clean water. Help make water as accessible as possible for communities in need by starting your own fundraiser through local organizations such as Wells Bring Hope.

12. Set up emergency relief packages for vulnerable communities.

Image via iStock.

Reach out to Operation USA or the International Medical Corps and donate your time, money, or even your airline miles to help give assistance when disaster strikes.

13. Unleash your inner scientist!

Image via iStock.

A project called 9 Dots is creating a brighter future for kids in underserved communities who want to pursue a life in science. And guess what? You can tutor them after school or on the weekends to help get them there.

14. Get in the fight for human rights.

Image via iStock.

The Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking (CAST) helps victims escape the cycle of modern day slavery by connecting them with other survivors and getting volunteers to fight the good fight with them. You can conduct talks, be an in-house attorney, or even use your graphic design skills to help out.

15. Harness the power of technology to create change.

Image via iStock.

Free community Wi-Fi and affordable solar power? Yes, please! Open Neighborhoods is providing just that to connect communities and help Mother Nature in the process. Lead the charge now to connect your neighborhood and make the shift to solar.

16. Help former gang members find a new path in life.

Image via iStock.

Homeboy Industries provides assistance such as job training to gang-involved and recently incarcerated men and women in order to help them find a new lease on life. Volunteers can help tutor and counsel participants and employers can even check out their talent pool for some emerging candidates.

17. Help prevent young people from entering gang life at all.

Image via iStock.

A Better LA focuses on community solutions to bring peace, order, and prevent the gang way of life from taking over in the first place. In fact, they're always looking for leaders just like you to help push the mission forward.

18. Park that car and stretch those legs for a cause.

Image via iStock.

CicLAvia has a straightforward plan: get people moving to promote better public health and cleaner air quality. Help out by getting your community to join, managing traffic, or just providing an extra set of hands.

19. Read, lead, and help your local library succeed.

Image via iStock.

The Library Foundation of Los Angeles provides people of all ages with different resources to help your local library. Whether through charitable donations or teaching others the value of reading, there's no shortage of ways to help.

20. Show how much you care about the coast.

Image via iStock.

With the help of Heal the Bay and Wildcoast, volunteers can help with beach cleanups, setting up educational events, or even just keeping a lookout and recording all the activity you see on the shore.

21. Reach out to an org to fund your own nonprofit.

Have an idea for a nonprofit that could help address an important issue? Reach out to the Goldhirsh Foundation or the Los Angeles Social Venture Partners and get your game-changing, life-altering idea out there.

22. Plant a garden and promote nutrition.

Image via iStock.

The Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust and the Ron Finley Project are planting more urban garden spaces in underserved communities and giving them much-needed access to nutritional food. And they're always on the lookout for helping hands to help in the garden or in their offices.

23. Raise your voice and engage the public.

Image via iStock.

Communicating is a crucial part of implementing change. And that's what LA Voice is all about. You can donate to help get people's voices heard or volunteer to help train your community in the art of public speaking.

Whatever you're passionate about, there's always something you can do to help.

In fact, if you're looking for more options, you can always check out Do Good LA for a comprehensive list of ideas.

No matter your calling in life, there's an organization out there calling to you as well. So listen closely and listen good because the answer could change someone else's life forever.

Photo courtesy of Girls at Work

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via Pixabay

The show must go on… and more power to her.

There are few things that feel more awful than being stranded at the altar by your spouse-to-be. That’s why people are cheering on Kayley Stead, 27, from the U.K. for turning a day of extreme disappointment into a party for her friends, family and most importantly, herself.

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All images provided by Bombas

We can all be part of the giving movement

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We all know that small acts of kindness can turn into something big, but does that apply to something as small as a pair of socks?

Yes, it turns out. More than you might think.

A fresh pair of socks is a simple comfort easily taken for granted for most, but for individuals experiencing homelessness—they are a rare commodity. Currently, more than 500,000 people in the U.S. are experiencing homelessness on any given night. Being unstably housed—whether that’s couch surfing, living on the streets, or somewhere in between—often means rarely taking your shoes off, walking for most if not all of the day, and having little access to laundry facilities. And since shelters are not able to provide pre-worn socks due to hygienic reasons, that very basic need is still not met, even if some help is provided. That’s why socks are the #1 most requested clothing item in shelters.

homelessness, bombasSocks are a simple comfort not everyone has access to

When the founders of Bombas, Dave Heath and Randy Goldberg, discovered this problem, they decided to be part of the solution. Using a One Purchased = One Donated business model, Bombas helps provide not only durable, high-quality socks, but also t-shirts and underwear (the top three most requested clothing items in shelters) to those in need nationwide. These meticulously designed donation products include added features intended to offer comfort, quality, and dignity to those experiencing homelessness.

Over the years, Bombas' mission has grown into an enormous movement, with more than 75 million items donated to date and a focus on providing support and visibility to the organizations and people that empower these donations. These are the incredible individuals who are doing the hard work to support those experiencing —or at risk of—homelessness in their communities every day.

Folks like Shirley Raines, creator of Beauty 2 The Streetz. Every Saturday, Raines and her team help those experiencing homelessness on Skid Row in Los Angeles “feel human” with free makeovers, haircuts, food, gift bags and (thanks to Bombas) fresh socks. 500 pairs, every week.

beauty 2 the streetz, skid row laRaines is out there helping people feel their beautiful best

Or Director of Step Forward David Pinson in Cincinnati, Ohio, who offers Bombas donations to those trying to recover from addiction. Launched in 2009, the Step Forward program encourages participation in community walking/running events in order to build confidence and discipline—two major keys to successful rehabilitation. For each marathon, runners are outfitted with special shirts, shoes—and yes, socks—to help make their goals more achievable.

step forward, helping homelessness, homeless non profitsRunning helps instill a sense of confidence and discipline—two key components of successful recovery

Help even reaches the Front Street Clinic of Juneau, Alaska, where Casey Ploof, APRN, and David Norris, RN give out free healthcare to those experiencing homelessness. Because it rains nearly 200 days a year there, it can be very common for people to get trench foot—a very serious condition that, when left untreated, can require amputation. Casey and Dave can help treat trench foot, but without fresh, clean socks, the condition returns. Luckily, their supply is abundant thanks to Bombas. As Casey shared, “people will walk across town and then walk from the valley just to come here to get more socks.”

step forward clinic, step forward alaska, homelessness alaskaWelcome to wild, beautiful and wet Alaska!

The Bombas Impact Report provides details on Bombas’s mission and is full of similar inspiring stories that show how the biggest acts of kindness can come from even the smallest packages. Since its inception in 2013, the company has built a network of over 3,500 Giving Partners in all 50 states, including shelters, nonprofits and community organizations dedicated to supporting our neighbors who are experiencing- or at risk- of homelessness.

Their success has proven that, yes, a simple pair of socks can be a helping hand, an important conversation starter and a link to humanity.

You can also be a part of the solution. Learn more and find the complete Bombas Impact Report by clicking here.

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