In the spirit of giving back, we’ve gathered our favorite organizations making Los Angeles a better place — as chosen by the Secret LA staff. From empowering initiatives to life-changing environmental projects, join us in celebrating the incredible work of these inspiring organizations that you can support year-round.
💚 Chosen by Katie K., SMN Community Manager:
“I chose PATH because ending homelessness in our community is a cause really close to my heart. I have worked with this organization annually providing meals and everyday necessities to those in need. I look forward to participating more heavily in their development of housing going forward. Lending a hand to help someone make it home and escape homelessness is such a rewarding feeling.”
➡️ PATH’s mission: “Our mission is to end homelessness for individuals, families, and communities.”
💚 Chosen by William B., Staff Writer:
“The climate crisis is a global issue, and electronic waste is a massive contributor to carbon dioxide emissions. Human-I-T aims to minimize e-waste while simultaneously giving back to communities that have limited access to technology. Having simply thrown away too many of my digital devices, I am glad to have discovered an organization that cares about not only diverting e-waste away from landfills but also closing the digital divide.”
➡️ Human-I-T’s mission: “To inspire a world where conscious capitalism drives sustainable and just opportunities for all people, organizations, and our planet to thrive.”
💚 Chosen by John A., Video Producer:
“As is widely recognized, homelessness remains a pressing issue in Los Angeles, and it can be daunting to navigate ways to contribute positively. Fortunately, organizations like Foot Prints Around The World exist to mobilize locals, fostering a collective effort to bring about meaningful changes in our communities. For myself and numerous others in the city, the presence of such groups has been invaluable. One such commendable initiative is led by Judy & Eric Harris, founders of Foot Prints Around The World. Volunteering alongside them is a truly uplifting experience, as their infectious positivity and belief in the impact of individual efforts make you feel empowered to make a real difference.
Every 4th Friday of the month, the Foot Prints Around The World team gathers to provide hot meals for the homeless. If you have the opportunity to volunteer, I highly recommend it! For those unable to volunteer, the team also welcomes donations. These contributions play a crucial role in supporting their mission to provide essentials such as hot meals, clothing, toys, and more!”
➡️ Foot Prints Around The World mission: “We believe that no one should go hungry or be left behind.”
💚 Chosen by Matthew M., Secret LA Video Producer:
“I’m choosing TreePeople as my org for the non-profits round up! What I love about TreePeople is their emphasis on education and equity when it comes to making nature accessible in the LA area. They preserve nature with their numerous hiking trails and parks, influence and research policies to help replant and protect nature provide shade equity in low-income neighborhoods around LA, and volunteer every week to help with other environmental justice issues around the SoCal area.”
➡️ Tree People’s mission: “TreePeople’s mission is to inspire, engage, and support people to take personal responsibility for the urban environment, making it safe, healthy, fun, and sustainable, and to share our process as a model for the world.
💚 Chosen by Nestor H., Social Media Manager:
“I chose Homeboy Industries because their considerable impact on the former incarnated population across California is incredible. This nonprofit has also created many programs for youth across Los Angeles that turn into professional life opportunities. I spoke with a group of youth back in 2021 at the Boyle Heights Center who were going through their re-entry program, and their words changed my life forever! The organization has become a place of hope and belonging for thousands of Angelenos, which I think is highly important when considering life opportunities after prison.”
➡️ Homeboy Industries’ mission: “Homeboy Industries provides hope, training, and support to formerly gang-involved and previously incarcerated men and women, allowing them to redirect their lives and become contributing members of our community.”
💚 Chosen by Cat H., Secret Media Editor:
“At Secret LA, we know and work alongside so many incredibly talented LA-based creatives daily. This holiday season, I’d love to shout out Greetings from South-Central, a community-based non-profit dedicated to the youth, educators, and families of South Central LA — Their mission is to advocate for, and foster experiences, where young people in the South LA community can participate in arts and culture! From coordinating enriching, art-centric field trips to providing an art school program and portfolio development for budding artists, Greetings from South-Central is empowering the next generation of creatives.
LA is one of the most creative cities in the world, and it’s so important to cultivate the next generation of creators, giving LA youth the support and empowerment they need to be able to explore all creative avenues. South Central LA has given the world so many incredibly talented artists and creatives, so let’s give back and empower the next generation of talent there.”
➡️ Greetings from South-Central’s mission: “Greetings from South-Central is a community-based non-profit dedicated to the youth, educators + families of south-central Los Angeles. Our mission is to promote, advocate for, and foster experiences where the south-central l.a community can participate in arts and culture.”
💚 Chosen by Sophie L., Staff Writer:
“Homegirl Café is part of Homeboy Industries, which provides a safe space and hands-on job training for those formerly incarcerated. I had a chance to speak to the men and women whose lives have changed because of Homeboy Industries and Homegirl Cafe — and their powerful stories of resiliency will stick with me forever. Homegirl Café reminds the clients/staff that community is everything, and we don’t have to go through our worst days alone. When people come together, we have the power to overcome anything. I believe our past doesn’t dictate our future, and the folks over at Homegirl Café are living proof of that. You can support them and this incredible cause just by visiting Homegirl Café. As you walk through those doors, you’ll be welcomed with warm words and even warmer coffee. I highly recommend trying their pastries which are baked fresh daily! Plus, nothing is more filling than knowing you’re supporting a powerful cause.”
➡️ Homegirl Café’s mission: “Homegirl Café provides a supportive environment for clients to receive on-the-job training in conjunction with Homeboy Industries’ wraparound services, empowering individuals to undertake what is often their first “real job”. This successful program has developed into a pipeline, creating strong female leaders who, in turn, mentor others and can confidently proclaim, I’ve been where you are, and I know you can do it.”
📍Location: Homegirl Café, 130 Bruno St, Los Angeles, CA 90012