Charity & Grassroots in Palm Bay

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Zumba with Sharon and Roz has accomplished something rare—making exercise something to look forward to. The two certified instructors personally lead each Zumba workout, creating a party-like atmosphere as they cycle through dance moves to the tune of international music. The sounds of grunts and laughter mix over the course of each 55-minute session as students work out their abdomens by crouching down to marvel at their swiftly moving feet. Though the schedule sometimes varies, it generally includes morning classes on the weekends and night classes throughout the week.

2785 Leisure Way
Melbourne,
FL
US

Save the Chimps was originally founded by Carole Noon in response to an announcement from the US Air Force that it would no longer be conducting research on chimpanzees. The chimps were subsequently donated to a biomedical laboratory. Save the Chimps sued the Air Force on behalf of the chimps, and after a year of legal battles, gained custody of 21 chimps descended from forebears who had participated in the NASA space research program. Save the Chimps then purchased a 150-acre sanctuary where it built a 3-acre island with hills, shelter, and climbing structures for the chimps.

Today, Save the Chimps maintains a permanent sanctuary for the care of approximately 300 chimpanzees rescued from research laboratories, the entertainment industry, and households where they were kept as pets. The chimps live on a series of 12 interconnecting islands where they can roam freely. Caregivers come in to feed them, engage them in play without physical contact, and clean their living spaces. Because it does not endorse captive breeding, Save the Chimps performs vasectomies and employs female birth control with its animals. It also limits access to the chimps, only allowing visits from the board of directors, people who are working with the chimps, and specially invited members of the public.

16891 Carole Noon Ln.
Fort Pierce,
FL
US

As its name suggests, Giveback2kids has one concern that takes precedence above all else: children. Serving the Treasure Coast, the newly hatched outreach program collaborates with small businesses and families around the neighborhood in an effort to snuff out local violence. That effort starts with the city's children, for whom Giveback2kids provides opportunities in education, community awareness, and even entertainment—all of which contributes to the organization's ultimate goal of helping youngsters develop not only academically, but socially and physically, as well.

648 Northwest Kilpatrick Avenue
Port St. Lucie,
FL
US

In the world of reality TV, it can be hard to separate fact from scripted sensationalism. But with Ghost Tracker Ghost Tours, visitors can see firsthand how the investigators on Ghost Tracker TV gauge the paranormal activity of reputed hauntings, and will even get to help document the spooky goings-on. Using the tools showcased on the screen—including EMF readers and K2 meters—tour-goers track the level of paranormal activity at 5–7 haunted sites, all while listening to their guide recount stories of the old court house or the hanging tree. During their 90 minutes of ghost hunting, guests maintain a leisurely pace while covering less than a mile of ground, allowing them ample time to peer around with cameras for spectral images that can’t be seen with the human eye. Some tours may be filmed for the show, so guests may be asked to sign a waver in order to enjoy their 15 minutes of fame.

28 Broadway
Kissimmee,
FL
US

When Amy, a little girl with leukemia, was unable to fulfill her wish to visit Orlando’s theme parks before she passed away, hotelier Henri Landwirth vowed that he’d never let a child in need’s wish go unfilled again. So he enlisted his colleagues in the hospitality and theme-park industries to help him make his vow a reality. His idea, Give Kids The World, expanded to a 70-acre resort village with more than 140 villa accommodations for wish children and their families, plus entertainment attractions and fun activities specially designed for children with special needs. The organization works with wish-granting organizations, such as Make-A-Wish Foundation, to fulfill any wishes to visit Orlando-area theme parks. In 2011, more than 7,000 wish children and their families from all 50 states and 25 countries visited the resort for a cost-free vacation.

210 S Bass Rd
Kissimmee,
FL
US

The nationally accredited Kissimmee Main Street program hopes to revitalize Kissimmee's downtown and preserve its history for future generations, as well as make it a place where residents want to go for shopping and dining. The nonprofit does this by hosting a farmer's market on Tuesday evenings and by running a welcome station where visitors can grab information on local shops and restaurants and receive several warm hand shakes. Kissimmee Main Street also puts on special events. These include everything from a food- truck bazaar to a sculpture pub crawl, during which participants view works of art on the street and in galleries while stopping at various food and drink spots.

421 Broadway
Kissimmee,
FL
US