A nonprofit organization designed to promote and improve the lively Columbia neighborhood, the Five Points Association has spearheaded many projects since the early 1980s, ranging from a large-scale streetscaping project to the construction of two fountains to yearly beautification updates. The group also organizes events to bring people to the landmark district—notably the Five After Five concert series and the city's Saint Patrick's Day festivities. Overall, the association, which comprises more than 100 members each year, works to balance the interests of the Five Points' merchants with those of residents and visitors.
The American Red Cross of South Carolina is part of an international, politically neutral movement that has delivered humanitarian care since 1863. It provides relief to survivors of national and manmade disasters in the forms of shelter, food, clothing, medication, and counseling. The organization also works to prevent future emergencies, and prepares community members to respond to them when they occur.
In South Carolina, the Red Cross collects blood donations, provides resources for the armed forces, and hosts health and safety training programs for citizens, including lifeguard and CPR training. Its volunteers also provide physical and emotional aid to survivors of disasters such as fires.
Located on a 100-acre island with surrounding forest in the Catawba River, Canaan Zipline Canopy Tour boasts ziplines up to 900 feet long cut a narrow path through the canopy, ferrying riders from treetop to treetop on tours that last up to 3.5 hours. Day and nighttime tours start atop a 70-foot tower that overlooks the 100-year-old oaks and dense foliage. Tours then descend on a series of up to nine separate ziplines, each connected to the other by nature trails suspension bridges.
Feathered Friends Forever Parrot Rescue and Refuge houses more than 600 tropical birds that have been neglected, abandoned, or abused. Those that are not suited for adoption live at the sanctuary for the remainder of their lives, on a 9-acre site known as Parrot Paradise Park. The park boasts 16 outdoor flights where visitors can interact with the birds, as well as trees and blooming shrubs to enhance the habitat for both the birds and human park goers. Most of the birds reside in 23 outdoor aviaries and 200 interior cages, where volunteers provide fresh food, fruit, and water on a daily basis, in addition to working with the parrots, cleaning cages, and providing tours for the public.
At Indian Land MedSpa, board-certified physicians Dr. Amit Shah, Dr. Nimish Patel, and Dr. Shephali Patel, along with a licensed aesthetician, brighten customers' complexions with a variety of minimally invasive procedures. They inject troublesome areas with FDA-approved Botox and Juvéderm, which combat signs of old age more effectively than hiding behind an oversize lollipop. They also perform customized facials, microdermabrasions, and chemical peels to help reduce common issues such as fine lines, acne, and uneven skin tone. The medspa is managed by Palmetto Medical Group.
Great Dane Friends of Ruff Love rescues great danes and other mixed-breed dogs, especially those with specials needs or health problems. Volunteers pick up the dogs from local shelters and evaluate them for temperament and health. After caring for any treatable conditions, such as heartworms or injuries that require surgery, the volunteers place the dogs in compatible foster homes. The foster families supply the dogs with food and toys, transport them to and from the vet, and bring them to events to meet potential adopters.