Charleston Nonprofits & Charities

nonprofitsLast updated on: 4/17/16

This guide from Holy City Sinner will help residents learn about the many nonprofit and charitable organizations that are located in the Charleston area. Whether you want to donate time or money, this is the list for you.

A couple quick pieces of info:

  • Information provided is subject to change at any moment
  • Click on the organization's name to be redirected to their website
  • Know of something that should be included (or removed)? Let me know by e-mailing me at [email protected] or tweeting to @holycitysinner.
  • The list was compiled through research and the assistance of the Charleston community!

A

  • Adaptive Expeditions - An interactive educational nonprofit using sport and recreation to offer critical health and wellness programs to individuals with physical and sensory disabilities. Through education, advocacy, and recreation adventures, Adaptive Expeditions empowers individuals with both technical skills and personal confidence to maintain active, independent lifestyles.
  • Alliance For Full Acceptance - A social justice organization achieving equality and acceptance for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. We’re lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender persons and straight allies uniting to eliminate prejudice based on sexual orientation and gender identity and expression. We have over 1600 donor/members and friends of AFFA and are headquartered in Charleston, SC.
  • ALS Association South Carolina Chapter - serve the needs of those living with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and their caregivers.
  • Alzheimer's Association: South Carolina Chapter - The world's leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research.
  • American Heart Association & American Stroke Association Charleston - Heart disease and stroke are the #1 cause of death in South Carolina. We're building healthier lives where you live and work
  • American Lung Association (SC Chapter) - The mission of the American Lung Association is to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease.
  • American Red Cross of Lowcountry South Carolina  - The Red Cross works to help those who need assistance, whether down the street, across the country or around the world.
  • Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired - Serves and supports people with visual needs
  • Avian Conservation Center/Center for Birds of Prey - Mission is to identify and address vital environmental issues by providing medical care to injured birds of prey and shorebirds, and through educational, research and conservation initiatives.

B

  • Barrier Islands Free Medical Clinic - Provides free medical care to adults living at or below the 200% of poverty level on Johns, Wadmalaw or James Island.
  • Be a Mentor - Ensure that all youth in the Lowcountry have a caring role model and advocate in their life to empower them to reach their full potential
  • Birthdays For All - mission is to provide every kid in Charleston County foster care with presents on their birthday.

C

  • Camp Good Times - We allow local children touched by autism to have a typical summer experience along with their peers.
  • Camp Happy Days – At Camp Happy Days, we believe that every child battling cancer in South Carolina should have an opportunity to benefit from a summer camp experience and other life-changing programs regardless of family income or economic status
  • Carolina Coonhound Rescue - Provides dogs with medical care, training, compassion, and love until they find their forever families.
  • Carolina Youth Development Center - An umbrella organization with 9 programs in total. Direct descendants of the Charleston Orphan House founded in 1790. has continually provided emergency housing for abused, neglected, and abandoned children of the Tri-County for the last 225 years. In addition to residential programs, they have community outreach programs, including their Big Brothers Big Sisters program.
  • Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Charleston - Defines mission as: “Commanded by the Holy Gospel mandates to love, to serve and to teach, Catholic Charities provides care and services to improve the lives of South Carolinians in need.”
  • The Center for Heirs’ Property Preservation - protects heirs’ property and promotes its sustainable use to provide increased economic benefit to family owners through education and legal services
  • Center for Women – help educate and advocate so that women in South Carolina have economic success and are leaders in their professional, community and personal lives
  • Charleston Animal Society - South Carolina’s largest animal rescue
  • Charleston Community Research to Action Board - a collaborative effort of diverse community-based organizations, academic institutions, and other staeholders promoting environmental justice
  • Charleston Fight For Hope - Dedicated to ending all forms of sexual violence, committed to serving the Lowcountry through our services and to become the leading voice in South Carolina for meaningful change in law and society
  • Charleston Friends of the Library - monprofit organization that supports and advocates for the Charleston County Public Library system.
  • CharlestonGOOD - Celebrates and supports grassroots efforts which address social, economic and environmental problems impacting our community
  • Charleston Habitat for Humanity - Seeking to put God’s love into action, Charleston Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, communities, and hope.
  • Charleston Jewish Family Services - Provides emergency food assistance and free counseling to anyone in need.
  • Charleston Junior Woman’s Club – The CJWC leadership stresses community involvement among its members, who in turn donate their time and talent to numerous organizations.
  • Charleston Miracle League - The Charleston Miracle League makes memories by providing a life-changing experience for children and adults with mental and physical challenges through a community supported baseball league
  • Charleston Moves - We love where we live, and believe that how we get around is a vital part of quality of life. Together we can make Charleston even greater.
  • Children's Museum of the Lowcountry - Offers unlimited learning adventures for children, ages Birth to 10 years, and their families. CML also works to address specific needs within the Lowcountry community by partnering with area organizations to develop targeted programs that, for example, combat childhood obesity, teach teenage mothers important parenting skills, and encourage children from low-income families to think about their futures as they realize their individual strengths
  • Charleston Police Pipes and Drums - The CPPD Mission is to serve the Charleston Police Department (CPD) by promoting the department through public performances and ceremonial services. The CPPD will additionally provide piping and drumming training and entertainment throughout the local, state, and regional communities.
  • Charleston Port and Seafarers’ Society – assisting international crews while they are in Charleston's port
  • Charleston Pride - promotes unity and visibility for the LGBTQ community through educational, cultural, and social programs as well Pride week
  • Charleston Promise Neighborhood - provides services from in-school medical care to after school extra-curricular activities to the four public schools in Charleston with the highest levels of poverty.
  • Charleston Regional Alliance for the Arts - dedicated to the shared realization of a dynamic and thriving arts community by serving arts organizations in the region of Charleston, SC with resources and best business practices.
  • Charleston Surfrider - A grassroots environmental organization protecting the Lowcountry's beaches, waves and waterways
  • Charleston Waterkeeper - Mission is to protect, promote, and restore the quality of Charleston’s waterways while creating a more engaged public through education, outreach, and celebration of our collective right to clean water
  • Charitable Society of Charleston - Our members are committed to providing for the needs of local not -for- profit organizations who help individuals in our community. Our members are particularly interested in organizations that serve children, the elderly, individuals with special needs, and community wellness
  • Chase After a Cure - We raise awareness for children’s cancer and provide funding for research labs who specialize in children’s cancer research.
  • Coastal Community Foundation - Empowers individuals, families, and organizations to make a lasting impact through permanent, endowed funds for charitable giving
  • Coastal Crisis Chaplaincy - Provides pastoral care and counseling for employees and families of first responders, as well as the general public
  • Coastal Lacrosse - A registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that seeks to provide lacrosse and academic support to at-risk youth in the Charleston, SC area.
  • Communities In Schools of the Charleston Area - Provides a nationally acclaimed dropout prevention program that surrounds students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life.
  • Courageous Kidz - Working to create A Safe Haven For Kids With Cancer and their families

D

E

  • East Cooper Community Outreach - To provide safety net services to our low income neighbors, while empowering them to create a better future for themselves, their families, and our communities
  • East Cooper Habitat for Humanity - Seeking to put God’s love into action, East Cooper Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, communities and hope
  • East Cooper Meals on Wheels - Serves nutritious meals to all homebound residents east of the Cooper, regardless of age or income
  • Ebony City Soccer Club - Provides an organized team soccer and youth development experience for children between the ages of 5 and 16 years.

F

  • Famliy Services, Inc. - Empower individuals to achieve financial stability through advocacy, counseling, and education
  • Fields to Families - Our focus is on improving the nutrition of hungry citizens in our area by coordinating the distribution of fresh, healthful produce – fruits and vegetables
  • Florence Crittenton Programs of SC - Our mission is to provide young, at-risk pregnant and parenting women comprehensive services to help them become self-sufficient and responsible mothers
  • Fresh Future Farm - A city-based nonprofit venture that leverages healthy food and grocery services to create socially just economic development

G

  • Girls Rock Charleston - empowers girls and trans youth through music education, DIY media, and creative collaboration
  • Goodwill Industries of Lower South Carolina - Helping people achieve their full potential through the dignity and power of work
  • The Green Heart Project - A farm-to-school program pairing volunteers with students to build and maintain an urban garden while reiterating classroom curriculum connecting students to fresh, healthy foods instilling virtues of hard work & success fostering relationships and building community
  • Greyhound Pets of America Charleston Chapter - Greyhound Pets of America is a national non-profit organization finding forever homes for retired racing greyhounds. The Charleston Chapter is run entirely by volunteers.

H

I

J

  • Johns Island Conservancy - Preserves and safeguards the natural habitat, wildlife, historical and agriculture resources of Johns Island
  • Junior League of Charleston - an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women, and improving the community through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers

K

  • Katie's Krops - The mission of Katie's Krops is to empower youth to start and maintain vegetable gardens of all sizes and donate the harvest to help feed people in need, as well as to assist and inspire others to do the same.

L

  • L.E.A.R.N. Horse Rescue - rescues and rehabilitates neglected and abused horses in need with the goal of placing them in responsible lifelong homes
  • Lemon-Aidan - A boy is selling lemonade and donating all the money to Hugs for Harper (see above).
  • Louie’s Kids - raises funds to help treat childhood obesity
  • Lowcountry Alliance for Model Communities - founded for the purpose of advocating environmental justice and promoting community development, education, employment, quality housing, and community involvement for the study area neighborhoods
  • Lowcountry Herald - Produces a quality print publication to be sold to homeless people and people living in poverty in Charleston, SC who may resell the publication and generate an income to lift themselves out of poverty and live a life of dignity
  • Lowcountry Orphan Relief - provides support services and aid to meet the needs of Lowcountry children identified as at-risk or suffering from abandonment, abuse and/or neglect.
  • Lowcountry AIDS Services -Provides free HIV/STD testing to the public. We serve men, women and children living with HIV/AIDS and provide access to medical case management among a variety of other services. For more info, please visit www.aids-services.com
  • Lowcountry Autism Consortium – helps families, friends, and professionals who support individuals on the autism spectrum
  • Lowcountry Autism Foundation - Helps all children, adults, and families facing the challenges of living with autism spectrum disorder and other developmental delays. Provides diagnostic assessments, behavioral intervention, educational support and service coordination.
  • Lowcountry Crisis Pregnancy Center – North Charleston – provides medical services, referrals, and assistance with unplanned pregnancies
  • Lowcountry Food Bank - Collect, inspect, maintain, and distribute otherwise wasted food products from manufacturers, food distributors, the government, supermarkets, wholesalers along with farmers to redistribute these food products to a grassroots network of over 320 member agencies providing hunger-relief services throughout the 10 coastal counties of South Carolina.

M

  • Metanoia Community Development Corporation - The ministry of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of South Carolina has worked in the Chicora-Cherokee community of North Charleston for 10 years and has created a sustainable model of faith-based, community-led, asset-driven community development
  • The Music Battery - A non-profit youth drumline providing a practice place, instruments and music instruction to youth in the North Charleston Community
  • My Sister’s House - assists victims of domestic violence and their children

O

  • One-Eighty Place - provides food, shelter and hope to end homelessness and hunger one person at a time, one family at a time.
  • Operation Home - mission is to help people remain in their
    homes by increasing safety and accessibility

P

  • Palmetto Medical Initiative - Exists to transform communities by improving the quality of accessible healthcare through a model of empowerment and sustainability
  • Palmetto Palace - Serving families of critically ill inpatient in hospitals by providing affordable lodging, transportation for families whose members are facing a health crisis
  • Palmetto Project - Identifying innovative approaches to social and economic challenges facing South Carolina, and put them into action throughout the state
  • Pattison’s Academy - will improve the quality of life for children with multiple disabilities by providing comprehensive education and rehabilitation programs
  • Pet Helpers - a private, nonprofit rescue and adoption Center and low-cost Spay/Neuter & Veterinary Center that serves communities across the Lowcountry
  • Push-Up & Up Charleston - Established to help communities decrease dropout rates and increase the chance at lifelong success among at-risk youth

R

S

  • The Salvation Army of Charleston - provides social service programs for those living in poverty
  • Sertoma Club of Charleston - Sertoma exists for the high and noble purpose of Service to Mankind by communication of thoughts, ideas and concepts to accelerate human progress in health, education, freedom and democracy
  • The Spokes Group Charleston - Our mission is simply to put  underprivileged young people in our community on bikes
  • Surfers Healing (Folly Beach Chapter) - Mission is to enrich the lives of people living with autism by exposing them to the unique experience of surfing
  • Sustainability Institute - Trains at risk youth (17 - 24 years old) and military veterans in home energy retro-fits and weatherization on houses owned by income qualified home owners.
  • Sustainable Warehouse - Collects and redistributes reusable materials from local homes and businesses to reduce the use of landfills

T

  • Teacher’s Supply Closet – gives teachers in Title 1 schools supplies for their classrooms
  • Tooth Angel - Nonprofit dental care organization devoted to delivering essential oral health products and services
  • Tricounty Cancer Survivors - Our volunteer organization is dedicate to empowering survivors and caregivers through patient support, education and advocacy. Mission Statement: Simply stated, our mission is to provide educational events and celebration for cancer patients, survivors and care-givers.
  • Tricounty Family Ministries - a faith-based not-for-profit, ecumenical ministry providing food, clothing, medical care, counseling, transportation, shelter, financial assistance and other vital services to the less fortunate in the tricounty area
  • Trident Literacy Association - Trident Literacy Association offers individualized and small group instruction for adults that gets results.
  • Trident United Way - Trident United Way gives you the power to make real, long-lasting change in the Lowcountry by addressing the issues that matter the most in people's lives -- education, financial stability and health.

V

  • Veterans on Deck - Our objective is to offer programs that are not just therapeutic, but also address the deeper vocational and social recalibration needs of returning Veterans.

W

  • Warrior Surf Foundation - Veteran operated non-profit organization aimed to help veterans with PTSD and physical injuries through surfing therapy. Veteran support, therapy, surfing.
  • Water Missions International - a nonprofit Christian engineering organization providing sustainable safe water and sanitation solutions for people in developing countries and disaster areas
  • We Are Family - a safe space for LGBTQ youth and allies that provides support, resources, and leadership development opportunities
  • Windwood Family Services - Since 1985 Windwood has provided therapeutic residential services to hundreds of abused, neglected children throughout the state of South Carolina.
  • WINGS for Kids - an education program that teaches kids how to behave well, make good decisions and build healthy relationships

Y

  • YEScarolina - Dedicated to teaching youth the principles of entrepreneurship and free enterprise.
  • YMCA of Greater Charleston - purpose is to improve the lives of all in the Greater Charleston area by connecting individuals, family, and communities with opportunities based on Christian Values that strengthen spirit, mind, and body.
  • YWCA of Greater Charleston - dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all.
  • Yo Art! Inc. - Develops a skill-based media arts technology program at Title I public schools, which exposes students from different backgrounds to unlimited opportunities that are available over and beyond the bounds of their local neighborhoods giving the children a broader scope in life.

7 comments

  1. Amber DeFago 7 December, 2014 at 11:29 Reply

    Hello,

    I would be happy to meet with you to share more details about your local American Heart Association and American Stroke Association chapter. Unfortunately, heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women with stroke being fourth.

    Our mission is to build healthier lives free of cardiovascular disease and stroke. The driving focus is through our 2020 impact goal and strategic plan which outlines health education, prevention, research and advocacy. Currently, we fund MUSC researchers in grants totaling $1.6 million dollars.

    I welcome the opportunity to provide more information as needed to help further our mission and save lives.

    Sincerely,
    Amber DeFago, Executive Director

  2. Josh Silverman 7 December, 2014 at 11:48 Reply

    I Heart Hungry Kids is a South Carolina 501c3 that empowers kids to help kids in the fight against hunger. We’re also the designated “kid conduit” and partner program with the Lowcountry Food Bank.

  3. The Green Heart Project 8 December, 2014 at 13:58 Reply

    We would love to be included in your list of local non-profits and charities. We are a farm-to-school program that pairs volunteers with students at Title-I schools to build and maintain an urban/school gardens. Our objective is to improve students access to fresh produce and healthy food while instilling the virtues of hard work and success through the mentorship aspect of our programs. Please let me know if you have any questions and I would be happy to address them.

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