Fitness & Fun

It was 1980 and Carol Nalevanko had moved to Arizona after graduating from the University of South Dakota. Looking for a job, answered an ad in the paper for an activities director.


When Robyn DeBell lived in Tucson, she witnessed her neighbor and friend, Louise Thomas, rise from the ashes after losing her young son, Michael, to a blood cancer. Louise raised the money to build the Steele Children’s Research Center. Their goal is to improve children’s health. Robyn, in turn, was inspired.

Protecting Our Furry Friends

The Arizona Humane Society has spent more than 60 years working to provide a good life for pets across the Valley through medical services, foster and adoption services, behavioral programs and disaster relief. 

Sixty Hearts

For 16 years, Kristine Thompson has been a champion for heart health as a member of the Phoenix Heart Ball committee. This year, as the ball celebrates its 60th year of raising funds to advance the lifesaving mission of the American Heart Association, she embraces her newest role: chair of the Phoenix Heart Ball.

Scottsdale League for the Arts Gives Back to the Community

The Scottsdale League for the Arts is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit volunteer organization of accomplished members who support the arts through social and educational opportunities.

At Kathy Sweet’s Venue, Nonprofits are the Main Event just ‘because’

When Paradise Valley residents Kathy Sweet and her husband, Dave, set out to create an event venue, they faced challenges that allowed them to open what is now a thriving business with hefty philanthropic undertones.

Saving Grace

 Article Danielle Accovelli | Photography CJ Gershon  From the moment your eyes meet the large, loving ones of the dog staring back at you, it’s love at first sight—and the beginning of something very special. No one understands that unique bond between dog and owner more than Arizona Small Dog Rescue. That’s why the volunteers at this no-kill rescue shelter—considered…

produce with a purpose

More than 20 years ago, two mothers met regularly with their developmental pediatrician to find ways to help their children with autism. That was the beginning of Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center (SARRC). The center’s programs, services and research help autistic individuals of all ages develop skills to help them engage in the community and live independent lives. On…

‘Tis the Season

There is something magical about the holiday season here in the Valley. That something goes well beyond the sidewalks and streets lined with luminarias and the twinkling lights that adorn saguaros and palm trees just as frequently as they do spruces and evergreens. What is truly special resides within those groups in our community who embody the season of giving,…

Fostering a Community

Nicole M. always knew she wanted to help foster and possibly adopt children. She can remember writing about it in a journal when she was 12 years old. The time finally presented itself. Over a short, but intense, three to four-month period, Nicole and her husband took foster care classes and went through the licensing process to become foster parents.…

Drive the Dream

Each year, more than 3.6 million referrals are made to child protection agencies nationwide, involving more than 6.6 million children, according to statistics from Childhelp— the nation’s oldest and largest nonprofit advocating for abused and neglected children.

One-of-a-Kind Cafe

Located inside the Scottsdale Civic Center Library is a small cafe with a big mission. Nationally, more than 90-percent of adults with autism are unemployed or underemployed. However, this coffee shop—aptly titled Beneficial Beans Cafe—is looking to turn that statistic around locally, by providing internship opportunities to adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Flight of Hope

Safety. Hope. Opportunity. These are the core values of Florence Crittenton, an organization dedicated to giving girls who have been through traumatic situations care, education, and most importantly, hope. Young women from all walks of life—including the child welfare system, the juvenile justice system and the behavioral healthcare system—come to Florence Crittenton seeking a place of refuge where they can…

Friendship for the Future

In 1986, 12 passionate and energetic women got together and organized a dinner and auction at Saks Fifth Avenue in Phoenix with one goal in mind: to raise funds for ground-breaking cancer research. The event, called Evening in the Park, proved to be a huge success. It raised over $13,000 for research and spurred the women to go on and…

As Sweet As A Cookie

Bright green cookie boxes filled with Thin Mints and Samoas might be the first image that appears when you hear the words “Girl Scouts.” However, this organization is about much more than just peddling these tasty treats. The national Girl Scouts organization was founded in 1912 with hopes of inspiring girls to find their “strengths, passions and talents.” The Phoenix-based…

Fashion for a Cure

There is nothing more devastating than learning that your child has a life-threatening disease. Fortunately, there’s hope in the form of capable doctors and breakthrough research. The Steele Children’s Research Center at the University of Arizona, Tucson is at the forefront of research for childhood illness, discovering cures for diseases and bringing hope to sick children. It was this sentiment…

Girl Power

A 13-year-old girl traded her dreams of being a doctor for motherhood. Everyone told her she couldn’t do both, and for a while she believed them. Two-years later, at 15, something clicked in her heart and mind when she attended the Girls Rule Foundation’s (GRF) Brilliant, Beautiful and Bold (BBB) event with her basketball team. “After the workshop she said,…

Season of Giving

When Rob Perelka was a teen going through a challenging time, someone wisely taught him that every kid counts, even him. This notion was something that stuck with Perelka as he grew up and what eventually inspired him to help start the nonprofit organization Every Kid Counts, Inc. (EKC).

Habitat for Humanity 
Central Arizona

Kathy Pechman, senior vice president at National Bank of Arizona (NB|AZ), enjoys volunteering for Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona (HFHCAZ) in her free time. When on a job site, she’s known as a “blue shirt.” The role of the "blue shirt" is to check-in and coordinate with volunteers, assuring that no tools or coffee cups are left on ladders and…

Phoenix American Youth Football

If the football industry decided to change its tactics by hiring players, cheerleaders, videographers and reporters who were children between the ages of 5 to 15, the National Football League might also end up with a new name: Phoenix American Youth Football (PHX AYF). I may be exaggerating a tad; however, PHX AYF is a great microcosm of the real…

Foothills Animal Rescue

Rescuers found a yellow Labrador pup with a serious leg injury, most likely caused by being hit by a car. He was under a year old and needed a new hip, months of rehabilitation and a safe foster home where he could heal. Foothills Animal Rescue (FAR) made this all possible by holding a donation drive to cover his care.…

Paradise Valley Mothers of Multiples

Twins, triplets and quads, oh my! Having a new baby is always life changing, and at times overwhelming, but having two, three or four at a time can take the joy and happiness, as well as the stress, to a whole new level. Paradise Valley Mothers of Multiples (PVMOM) was founded to help parents of multiples thrive in this challenging,…

As You Wish

Walking through the doors of As You Wish, a pottery painting studio, you are instantly hit with cool, damp air mixed with the smell of clay and paint. One wall of the studio is lined with shelves full of eclectic pottery pieces, ranging from vases to figurines, just waiting for someone with a spark of creativity to come along wielding a…

Father Figure Foundation

Father Figure Foundation (FFF) is an Arizona-based non-profit organization that helps alleviate the financial burden for at-risk single fathers who are unable to pay their child support and nurture a relationship with their children by fostering an environment of volunteerism, community service and extra-curricular activities for kids.

Whispering Hope Ranch

Families Find Hope Among the Pines Article by Michelle Guerrero We were one of the last groups of campers to arrive. After checking in at the office we were escorted, via golf cart, to the campfire where the rest of our group was waiting. The sun was nearly set and the light from the campfire … Continued

Paradise Valley Florist

A Family-Owned Business Spreads Happiness To Others With Flowers And Kindness Author Michelle Guerrero | Photography Provided Suki Jandu, the owner of Paradise Valley Florist, makes stunning arrangements for her clients. She adds a memorable touch to their events, brightens up their homes or sends a touch of love in a bouquet. She’s magic with … Continued