Caritas, tzedakah, zakat, daan. No matter what it’s called, charitable giving is a tenant of all religions. It’s also the pillar of civic and fraternal associations throughout the Main Line and western suburbs. Many nonprofits are looking for volunteers, in-kind professional services and more. For our first-ever Giving List, we asked regional leaders to name their favorite charities.
The Ardmore Avenue Community Center offers personal, academic and athletic opportunities for young people. www.aaccnow.org.
The Association for the Colonial Theatre supports the historic theater in Phoenixville, which offers film screenings, programs for young audiences, live concerts and community events. www.thecolonialtheatre.com.
Malvern-based Bringing Hope Home pays rent, utilities and other essentials so families battling cancer can stay in their homes. www.bringinghopehome.org.
Norristown’s Centre Theater connects the arts to the wider community. Opened in 1851, this landmark just completed much-needed renovations that expanded its performance space and educational programming for at-risk youth. www.thecentretheater.com.
To support people with disabilities, Citizen Advocacy of Chester County Inc. pairs them with volunteers who promote, protect and defend their welfare and interests. www.citizenadvocacycc.org.
Food, shelter, education, healthcare and transportation are only a small part of what Cityteam Chester provides to the homeless and poverty-stricken. www.cityteam.org/chester.
Phoenixville’s The Clinic provides free medical care to kids and adults who lack healthcare insurance. www.theclinicpa.org.
Bryn Mawr-based DMAX Foundation promotes mental health awareness in college students. www.dmaxfoundation.org.
Ardmore’s breastcancer.org provides medical information and emotional support to millions of women and their loved ones. www.breastcancer.org.
The Media-based Domestic Abuse Project of Delaware County provides counseling services, emergency shelter, legal services, and medical advocacy for adults, teens and children. www.dapdc.org.
Chester’s Drexel Neumann Academy brings out the best in grade-school students in a multicultural environment. www.drexelneumannacademy.net.
Education, conservation and fun are part of the mission at Norristown’s Elmwood Park Zoo. www.elmwoodparkzoo.org.
Based in Wayne, Emergency Aid Foundation of Pennsylvania supports literacy, healthcare, seniors, arts groups and the education of young women. EA is a longtime funder of programs that raise awareness about child abuse while helping its victims. www.eafoundation.org.
Founded by Haverford’s Anna Maloney, Live Nice spreads the message of kindness with T-shirts, hats and car magnets. Proceeds benefit Teach Anti-Bullying, Philly Girls In Motion, CHOP and other organizations. www.livenice.org.
Norristown Area School District Athletics instills work ethic, team building and discipline in students who participate in sports. www.norristownathletics.org.
Open Hearth provides housing, transportation and financial management services to people with disabilities. It also serves single parents, displaced families, and people
with substance abuse issues in Chester and Montgomery counties. www.openhearthinc.org.
Phoenixville’s Orion Communities offers clothing, food, shelter and education to people experiencing hardships. www.orioncommunities.org.
Based in Narberth, Paws and Affection trains and places service, facility and companion dogs with disabled children. www.pawsandaffection.org.
Peter’s Place provides grief support services to children and adults at its Radnor headquarters and through various school-based peer support groups. www.petersplaceonline.org.
Phoenixville Area Positive Alternatives develops quality youth programs in academic enrichment, social development and athletics. www.papa1995.org.
Malvern’s Plaid Pajamas Project supplies new winter jammies to people in need. www.plaidpajamas.org.
At Project HOME, veterans, LGBTQ teens, those battling substance abuse, and countless others benefit from housing, educational, employment and medical programs.
The Radnor Educational Foundation impacts students in the Radnor Township School District by funding STEM, fine arts and cultural initiatives, tutoring and mentoring, and other programs. www.radnoreducationalfoundation.org.
Wayne’s Saturday Club improves the lives of women and children by supporting charities with service projects and fundraising events. www.saturdayclub.org.
Exton’s Triskeles Foundation supports charities through values-aligned donor-advised funds, consulting services and philanthropic education. www.triskeles.org.
West Chester-based Unite for HER supports local women fighting breast cancer. www.uniteforher.org.
Our panel … Christine Brunelli, president, the Saturday Club; Deanna Doane, vice president, Wayne Business Association; Daniel Hilferty, president and CEO, Independence Blue Cross; Alexis McCarthy, managing director, Triskeles Foundation; Debbie Morton, founder and curator, Carre d’Artistes; Brad Paul, proprietor, Ardmore Toyota; Albert Zone, executive director and CEO, Elmwood Park Zoo.