Riding a bike, teaching kid scientists, and 21 more L.A. ways you can help others.

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.

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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!

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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.

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Should a man lose his home because the grass in his yard grew higher than 10 inches? The city of Dunedin, Florida seems to think so.

According to the Institute of Justice, which is representing Jim Ficken, he had a very good reason for not mowing his lawn – and tried to rectify the situation as best he could.

In 2014, Jim's mom became ill and he visited her often in South Carolina to help her out. When he was away, his grass grew too long and he was cited by a code office; he cut the grass and wasn't fined.

France has started forcing supermarkets to donate food instead of throwing it away.

But several years later, this one infraction would come back to haunt him after he left to take care of him's mom's affairs after she died. The arrangements he made to have his grass cut fell through (his friend who he asked to help him out passed away unexpectedly) and that set off a chain reaction that may result in him losing his home.

The 69-year-old retiree now faces a $29,833.50 fine plus interest. Watch the video to find out just what Jim is having to deal with.

Mow Your Lawn or Lose Your House! www.youtube.com

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The world officially loves Michelle Obama.

The former first lady has overtaken the number one spot in a poll of the world's most admired women. Conducted by online research firm YouGov, the study uses international polling tools to survey people in countries around the world about who they most admire.

In the men's category, Bill Gates took the top spot, followed by Barack Obama and Jackie Chan.

In the women's category, Michelle Obama came first, followed by Oprah Winfrey and Angelina Jolie. Obama pushed Jolie out of the number one spot she claimed last year.

Unsurprising, really, because what's not to love about Michelle Obama? She is smart, kind, funny, accomplished, a great dancer, a devoted wife and mother, and an all-around, genuinely good person.

She has remained dignified and strong in the face of rabid masses of so-called Americans who spent eight years and beyond insisting that she's a man disguised as a woman. She's endured non-stop racist memes and terrifying threats to her family. She has received far more than her fair share of cruelty, and always takes the high road. She's the one who coined, "When they go low, we go high," after all.

She came from humble beginnings and remains down to earth despite becoming a familiar face around the world. She's not much older than me, but I still want to be like Michelle Obama when I grow up.

Her memoir, Becoming, may end up being the best-selling memoir of all time, having already sold 10 million copies—a clear sign that people can't get enough Michelle, because there's no such thing as too much Michelle.

Don't like Michelle Obama? Don't care. Those of us who love her will fly our MO flags high and without apology, paying no mind to folks with cold, dead hearts who don't know a gem of a human being when they see one. There is nothing any hater can say or do to make us admire this undeniably admirable woman any less.

When it seems like the world has lost its mind—which is how it feels most days these days—I'm just going to keep coming back to this study as evidence that hope for humanity is not lost.

Here. Enjoy some real-life Michelle on Jimmy Kimmel. (GAH. WHY IS SHE SO CUTE AND AWESOME. I can't even handle it.)

Michelle & Barack Obama are Boring Now www.youtube.com

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What will future generations never believe that we tolerated in 2019?

Dolphin and orca captivity, for sure. They'll probably shake their heads at how people died because they couldn't afford healthcare. And, they'll be completely mystified at the amount of food some people waste while others go starving.

According to Biological Diversity, "An estimated 40 percent of the food produced in the United States is wasted every year, costing households, businesses and farms about $218 billion annually."

There are so many things wrong with this.

First of all it's a waste of money for the households who throw out good food. Second, it's a waste of all of the resources that went into growing the food, including the animals who gave their lives for the meal. Third, there's something very wrong with throwing out food when one in eight Americans struggle with hunger.

Supermarkets are just as guilty of this unnecessary waste as consumers. About 10% of all food waste are supermarket products thrown out before they've reached their expiration date.

Three years ago, France took big steps to combat food waste by making a law that bans grocery stores from throwing away edible food.According to the new ordinance, stores can be fined for up to $4,500 for each infraction.

Previously, the French threw out 7.1 million tons of food. Sixty-seven percent of which was tossed by consumers, 15% by restaurants, and 11% by grocery stores.

This has created a network of over 5,000 charities that accept the food from supermarkets and donate them to charity. The law also struck down agreements between supermarkets and manufacturers that prohibited the stores from donating food to charities.

"There was one food manufacturer that was not authorized to donate the sandwiches it made for a particular supermarket brand. But now, we get 30,000 sandwiches a month from them — sandwiches that used to be thrown away," Jacques Bailet, head of the French network of food banks known as Banques Alimentaires, told NPR.

It's expected that similar laws may spread through Europe, but people are a lot less confident at it happening in the United States. The USDA believes that the biggest barrier to such a program would be cost to the charities and or supermarkets.

"The logistics of getting safe, wholesome, edible food from anywhere to people that can use it is really difficult," the organization said according to Gizmodo. "If you're having to set up a really expensive system to recover marginal amounts of food, that's not good for anybody."

Plus, the idea may seem a little too "socialist" for the average American's appetite.

"The French version is quite socialist, but I would say in a great way because you're providing a way where they [supermarkets] have to do the beneficial things not only for the environment, but from an ethical standpoint of getting healthy food to those who need it and minimizing some of the harmful greenhouse gas emissions that come when food ends up in a landfill," Jonathan Bloom, the author of American Wasteland, told NPR.

However, just because something may be socialist doesn't mean it's wrong. The greater wrong is the insane waste of money, damage to the environment, and devastation caused by hunger that can easily be avoided.

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The world is dark and full of terrors, but every once in a while it graces us with something to warm our icy-cold hearts. And that is what we have today, with a single dad who went viral on Twitter after his daughter posted the photos he sent her when trying to pick out and outfit for his date. You love to see it.




After seeing these heartwarming pics, people on Twitter started suggesting this adorable man date their moms. It was essentially a mom and date matchmaking frenzy.

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