Heal One World empowers people with the knowledge and techniques to help themselves. Through classes, the organization teaches people skills and natural, noninvasive treatments they can use to ameliorate illness and injury and prevent further ailments from arising. Most of these classes impart self-help techniques and are therefore not covered by insurance, so the organization provides them on a sliding scale. Its programs range from yoga and tai chi to acupuncture and Feldenkrais treatments, drawing from ancient, time-tested practices that have often been cast to the wayside by Western culture. Heal One World also maintains a database of care providers who help people from low-income backgrounds attain stability of mind and body.
Yet beyond the individual, Heal One World focuses on strengthening the community. On weekends, it organizes vegan potlucks and film screenings on green opportunities and charity projects, and every May it holds a film, music, and arts festival in order to raise awareness of pressing environmental issues and include the community in artistic endeavors.
Founded by Selenia Logan, PinkPoleParty.org helps enrich women's lives by both raising money to fight breast cancer worldwide and helping women express their sensuality through pole-dancing workshops. While enjoying complimentary pink champagne and lemonade, hors d'oeuvres, and desserts, attendees run through two consecutive workshops: a pole dancing class, in which they learn warm-up exercises and basic pole moves, poses, and routines, and a lap-dance session covering the art of stripteases and flirtatious dances. All proceeds benefit breast cancer research through the American Cancer Society's Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walks.
TreePeople fosters environmental awareness in children from struggling public schools who might otherwise never have the opportunity to experience the beauty of nature. Each year, the organization guides 10,000 elementary school students through a charming urban forest in Coldwater Canyon Park, with more than 1,000 acres of canopied trails and native plantings. Spending time outside among living trees forges a connection with nature that can profoundly improve the quality of life of children residing in an urban landscape. Eco-tours invest students with a greater appreciation for the connections between trees, water, air, and soil and demonstrate that they can bring the calming simplicity and environmental benefits of the forest to their communities.
In addition to medically eliminating the reproductive capacities of the dogs it rescues—a procedure required by law in Los Angeles—Ace of Hearts provides the animals with veterinary care and places them in foster homes where trained individuals feed and nurture the dogs until they’re adopted. Ace of Hearts supplies these foster homes with canine essentials, including food, bedding, collars, and toys. Since its inception in 2001, the organization has rescued more than 2,000 dogs in the Los Angeles area, with more than 50 pups currently awaiting adoption.
From 7 p.m. to midnight on Thursday, September 13, celebrities will play poker and party with guests 21 and older on the Petersen Automotive Museum’s rooftop overlooking the Hollywood Hills. Former NFL player Warren Sapp and actor Josh Henderson host the event, which in the past has featured such celebrities as Jason Alexander, Karina Smirnoff, and Slash from Guns N’ Roses. As DJ duo KimKat spins music, attendees mingle with the stars over complimentary finger foods and drinks, and compete in a poker tournament to see whose cards best soak up spilled beer. All proceeds from the fourth-annual event, which includes a silent auction, help benefit Lupus LA, a foundation dedicated to combatting lupus through research, awareness, and family services.
In 1996, Food on Foot set up on the steps of the Hollywood Post Office, delivering its first chicken dinner out of the trunk of a car to neighbors experiencing homelessness. The organization quickly expanded and began serving meals every Sunday to increase food security among underserved residents. Today, Food on Foot serves that same meal of chicken, rice, and tortillas every week, as well as a variety of healthy snacks including granola bars, baby carrots, fresh fruit, and bottled water. It also distributes gently used clothing, shoes, and sleeping bags and business clothes for clients who have secured job interviews.
In 1999, Food on Foot began its Work for Food program, wherein volunteers pick up trash in the Hollywood area. Each volunteer fills two garbage bags and receives a $10 grocery-store gift card, healthy snacks, and a chicken dinner in return. After participating in the program for two months, volunteers are placed on a daily route to pick up trash while the program staff works to help them acquire a full-time job. Once participants find a job, Food on Foot funds an apartment, utilities, and transportation for three months while they become established in their new position. During this time, workers continue their daily trash route and turn in their paychecks to Food on Foot. At the end of the three-month period, they receive the uncashed checks to open a savings account.