Charity Register

The definitive guide to Marion County’s charitable organizations presents numerous opportunities to give back to our community — particularly to those in need. These pages are created to help our readers connect with trusted, local nonprofit organizations deserving of our gifts of time and treasure.



EARS Endangered Animal Rescue Sanctuary
P.O. Box 306, Citra, FL 32113
352.266.2859 |
Susan Nassivera:
Mission Statement: Preserving with dignity.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020:
Always improving and adding larger turnouts and new enrichment for our animals.
Greatest need: Turnout area for every cat so they do not have to take turns going out.
Signature Event: Hot Cars and Cool Cats held on November 16th 2019,
April 18th, 2020, and November 21, 2020. See website for locations and
more information.

Forest Animal Rescue
640 NE 170th Court, Silver Springs, FL 34488
352.625.7377 |
Lisa Stoner, vice president:
Mission Statement: Forest Animal Rescue is a nonprofit wild animal sanctuary and educational facility, dedicated to the lifetime care of non-releasable wild animals to prevent them from being destroyed — and the rehabilitation and release of native wild black bears.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We are continuing to expand and improve our facility. After moving our entire operation to Marion County and building from scratch, there is much to do. We greatly need assistance with expansion through funding, volunteers, and interns (interns may become eligible for permanent employment).

Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs, Inc.
3251 NE 180th Ave., Williston, FL 32696
352.789.5016 |
Mary Jo Brandt:
Mission Statement: Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs, Inc. was created for the charitable purpose of rescuing, raising, training, and then donating medical service dogs to mentally and/or physically impaired individuals to provide aid and independence while improving the quality of life for both the recipient and dog. In addition, it is our goal to promote education about service dogs and pioneer research studies to further advance service dog training. We also strive to raise public awareness regarding the laws pertaining to service dogs and lessen the dependency of the disabled on the government, communities, caregivers, and families.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We will soon launch a campaign for funds to develop a 68-acre property that we have recently purchased in Levy County into a state-of-the-art training campus that will enable us to change and save more lives. Watch for the launch of our campus campaign!
Signature Event: Celebrating 10 years of being a nonprofit! Event TBA.

Have a Heart for Companion Animals, Inc.
P.O. Box, 831413, Ocala, FL 34483
352.687.4070 |
Marilyn Marinelli:
Mission Statement: Have A Heart for Companion Animals Inc. operates as an information and referral center for those who are looking for help related to animal issues. Emphasis is placed on animal welfare education through brochures, website articles, and telephone counseling.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Our long-term goal is to build a no-kill animal rescue shelter and sanctuary.

Humane Society of Marion County
701 NW 14th Road, Ocala, FL 34475
352.873.7387 |
Roseann Morton, president:
Mission Statement: The Humane Society of Marion County is a nonprofit, no-kill shelter dedicated to the care and protection of animals in Marion County, Florida. Our mission is to prevent cruelty, suffering, and overpopulation of animals.
Signature Events: Celebrate the beginning of summer with an old-fashioned cookout at the Dog Days of Summer 2020 event. Enjoy an evening of high-stakes casino fun where the proceeds go directly to benefiting the animals at HSMC during the Casino Night 2020.

Patriot Service Dogs
10545 SE 42nd Court, Belleview, FL 34420
352.514.9903 |
Lee Conger, president and lead trainer:
Mission Statement: To enrich the lives of disabled military and veterans in our communities by placing a well-trained and lovingly raised service dog with them and educate the public about the rights of service dog trainers and teams, while focusing on giving disabled veterans back some of their independence lost while preserving ours.
Signature Event: Cheers to Patriot Landing! (Dinner Dance). Come enjoy an evening of music and food with the chance to meet our newest puppies in training! Get ready to be charmed! February 29th from 6–9 p.m. at Whispering Oaks Winery, Oxford, FL.

Perpetual Care
1200 NW 73rd Terrace, Ocala FL 34482
888.355.7091 |
Virginia Kilmer:
Mission Statement: Perpetual Care educates pet owners and assists them with life care and estate planning for their pets in the event that they are no longer able to care for them due to disability or death. When necessary, Perpetual Care also rescues and finds or provides a home for orphaned pets at our Life Care Center.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Perpetual Care would like to expand the capacity to help more pets by expanding the current facility or find a new facility with more space for animals.

VOCAL (Voices of Change Animal League)
6393 SW 52nd St., Ocala, FL 34474
352.289.0800 |
Mission Statement: Our mission is to solve the homeless pet problem through prevention, community outreach, adoption and collaboration.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Our goal for 2020 is to continue to expand and grow several successful programs. These programs include trap-neuter-return of feral cats, pet food and resources for the public, rescue and adoptions of animals exclusively from Marion County, and providing food and pet items through our warehouse to over 80 other rescues, food banks, and shelters.
2020 Special Event: Come support us our fifth annual Furball on February 8th, 2020!

Addiction/Substance Abuse

Christian 12 Step Ministry, Inc.
415 NW First Ave., Ocala, FL 34475
352.732.0877 |
Renee Arnett:
Mission Statement: We exist to give hope in Christ, show love through support, and encourage change through Bible-based recovery from substance abuse, emotional strongholds, and codependency.
2020 Goal: Fundraise with an eye toward making our program available globally.

The Centers, Inc.
5664 SW 60th Ave., Ocala, FL 34474
352.291.5555 |
Kristina Donohue:
Mission Statement: Our mission at The Centers is to strengthen lives with compassionate healing.

Phoenix Houses of Florida
15681 North U.S. Highway 301, Citra, FL 32113
813.881.1000 |
Maria Alvarez, president and CEO:
Mission Statement: We are passionate about healing individuals, families, and communities challenged by substance use disorders and related mental health conditions.


Fine Arts For Ocala, Inc. (FAFO)
120 SW Fifth St., Suite 106, Ocala, FL 34471
352.867.0355 |
Maggie Weakley:
Mission Statement: Formed in 1972 with a simple mission to promote the appreciation of the fine arts and to enhance art education within our community. FAFO continues to support art education through scholarships and various community programs.
2020 Event: FAFO’s Symphony Under The Stars on Mother’s Day, May 10th, 2020 at the Ocala Golf Club.

Magnolia Art Xchange, Inc. (MAX)
531 NE First Ave., Ocala, FL 34470
352.629.8414 |
Jessi Miller:
Mission Statement: To repurpose historic Ocala Union Station and further develop the downtown cultural campus by providing studios, instructional spaces, and exhibition opportunities for visual artists in a collaborative hub that encourages professional development.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: MAX is Ocala’s first art incubator and we have our first artist residents in studios with a grand opening on November 7, 2019. We will have a second call for resident artists and members early in 2020. Please visit our website for the latest project information.

Marion Cultural Alliance
23 SW Broadway St., Ocala, FL 34471
352.369.1500 |
Jaye Baille:
Mission Statement: Marion Cultural Alliance champions, convenes, and creates opportunities for artists and arts organizations.

Ocala Film Foundation
2008 SE 37th Court Circle, Ocala FL 34471
352.817.4155 |
Laurie Zink:
Mission Statement: The Ocala Film Foundation leads our community in creative and cultural discovery through the medium of motion pictures. Our efforts support the cultural and economic well-being of the region, in addition to providing student scholarships and classroom grants to students and teachers of digital media and technology.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We will be unveiling two new plaques to be added to the Walk of Fame. Date TBA.

Ocala Symphony Orchestra – Reilly Arts Center
500 NE Ninth St., Ocala, FL 34470
352.351.1606 |
Willliam Nassal, president
Mission: Our mission is to create cultural experiences and opportunities for our community through music.

Reilly Arts Center
500 NE Ninth St., Ocala, FL 34470
352.351.1606 |
Megan Whittaker:
Mission Statement: To provide cultural experiences for the community through arts and entertainment.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We are continuing to focus on providing high-quality programming, an excellent customer experience, and community impact, especially in our downtown and arts community overall.

The Marion Players, Inc. DBA Ocala Civic Theatre
4337 E. Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala, FL 34470
352.236.2851 |
Marilyn Price:
Mission Statement: To uplift, inspire, and entertain by providing quality theatrical experiences and performing arts education.


Black Nurses Rock – Ocala Florida Chapter
P.O. Box 5544, Ocala, FL 34478
352.208.9412 |
Bridget Boynton:
Mission Statement: To assist dedicated, driven, and determined nurses to grow professionally while addressing healthcare disparities in the Ocala and Marion county area.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: To continue getting out in the community to educate and bring awareness about health-related topics and continuing to help aspiring nurses become nurses.

Liberation Ocala African American Council, Inc.
P.O. Box 2693, Ocala, FL 34478
Oscar Brown:
Mission Statement: Initiate and facilitate programs and activities for the enhancement of the quality of life for African Americans in Marion County.

Disabled Resources

ARC Marion, Inc.
2800 SE Maricamp Road, Ocala, FL 34471
352.387.2210 |
Leah Craig |
Mission Statement: ARC Marion’s mission is to create opportunities for persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities to live, work, and play to the fullest of their capabilities in Marion County.
Signature Event: Ocala Bike Fest in the spring (March–April). Dates TBA.

Center for Independent Living of North Central Florida
3445 NE 24th St., Ocala, FL 34470
352.368.3788 |
Tony Delisle, director
Andrea Melvin, office manager:
Mission Statement: Our mission is empowering people with disabilities to exert our individual right to live as independently as possible, make personal life choices, and achieve full community inclusion.
Signature Event 2020: The Amazing Give Charity Fundraiser, to be held in March. The Amazing Give will raise money for local nonprofits, like the Center for Independent Living of North Central Florida, through a single online donation platform. This will provide an easy way to connect donors to the charitable causes they care about most and encourage them to take action.

Champions for Champions, Inc.
240 SE 17th St., Suite C, Ocala, FL 34471
Phone: 352.585.9158  or  352.462.0380 |
Maria C. Roman or Don Nottingham:
Mission Statement: The purpose of Champions for Champions, Inc., is to enrich and empower families’ lives and values through providing and facilitating educational, sports, arts, social and life skills programs for people with disabilities.
Signature Events: Night of the Brightest Stars: A Christmas Gala held on December 7, Saturday at One Health Center.
Fifth Annual Champions Celebrity Night Dinner and Auction at Southeastern Auditorium: March 20, 2020. Tickets will be on sale soon.
Fifth Annual NFL Caring For Kids Clay Shoot at Robinson Ranch on March 21, 2020.
Celebrity Champion Waiters at Celebrity Restaurants — Various times.

Florida Center for the Blind, Inc.
1411 NE 22nd Ave., Ocala, FL 34470
352.873.4700 |
Mandy Intravaia:
Mission Statement: The mission of the Florida Center for the Blind is to provide services, at no cost, to individuals who are visually impaired, empowering them to live safely, productively, and independently.

Kenny’s Place Nursery
7677 SE 41st Court, Ocala, FL 34480
352.867.1213 |
Brandy Evans, director:
Mission Statement: Our mission is to create a positive, caring, and accepting environment for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Marion Therapeutic Riding Association (MTRA)
6850 SE 41st Court, Ocala, FL 34480
352.732.7300 |
Pam Morrison:
Mission Statement: MTRA strives to offer the miraculous benefits of therapeutic horseback riding and equine facilitated learning to persons of all ages and capabilities that are physically, mentally, or emotionally challenged.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: To increase funding for the growing veterans program, Freedom Reins, and the Equine Experience program for foster children and at-risk youth.
Upcoming Events:
November 30th: Holiday Market and Antique Cars show
January 19th: Florida Mini Match
February 24th: Fourth annual Golf Tournament
March 1st: HITS Family Fun Day
March 21st: Poker Run

Stirrups ‘n Strides Therapeutic Riding Center, Inc.
4246 W. Hwy 318, Citra, Florida 32113
352.591.1042 (office) or 352.427.3569 (Betty cell) |
Gail McDaniel, program manager
Betty Gray, executive director:
Mission Statement: To provide therapeutic horseback riding and carriage driving to anyone with physical, mental, or emotional challenges and to improve their quality of life with opportunities for emotional, educational, and physical growth through horsemanship and competition.
Signature Event: “Goin’ for Gold” charity fundraiser at Golden Ocala held on December 8th at 5–9 p.m. For more information, contact Betty Gray. This is our biggest event of the year!
We are so thankful for every bit of community support and assistance we are receiving toward ultimately reach our goals.

Transitions Life Center
NEW FACILITY at 3360 NW Gainesville Road, Ocala, FL, 34475
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 236, Ocala, FL 34478
352.877.8999 |
Darren Ritch, president:
Mission Statement: The Mission of Transitions Life Center (TLC) is to provide a safe, caring, and enriching community for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.


Ambleside School of Ocala
507 SE Broadway St., Ocala, FL 34471
352.694.1635 |
Emmy Lilholt:
Mission Statement: It is the mission of the Ambleside administration and faculty to provide what Charlotte Mason called “a living education,” where each child is guided and empowered to author a full and free life, a life rich in relationship to God, self, others, ideas, and all of creation.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We will build out the high school building to accommodate our high school students.
Signature Event: Annual Father-Daughter Dance on February 7th and 8th, 2020 at Circle Square Cultural Center.

Cornerstone School
2313 SE Lake Weir Ave., Ocala, FL 34471
Matt Young, marketing coordinator:
Mission: In an ever-changing world, our mission is to prepare students for success with a comprehensive educational program of an innovative curriculum; inspirational teaching that develops a passion for learning; and the Cornerstone values of acceptance, integrity, and mutual respect.
Signature Events: Marion County Chili Cookoff on November 2nd at the Livestock Pavilion.
Ocala Derby Party on May 2nd: Ocala’s premier Kentucky Derby party is an evening full of big hats, mint juleps, and exciting entertainment. There will be live music, live and silent auctions, a Best Hat competition, signature cocktails, hand-crafted hors d’oeuvres and multiple big screen TVs showing all of the coverage of the race.

Grace Christian School
4410 SE 3rd Ave., Ocala, FL 34480
352.387.3090 |
Kristin Dean |
Mission Statement: To prepare our children for life, to honor and glorify God in a Christ-centered environment of academic excellence.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Students at Grace Christian School are taught the importance of giving back to the community through service learning. Each year our school participates and donates to local charities.
Signature Event: Our Annual Mother-Son Dance is held each spring. Proceeds from the event are donated to a charity as part of our “Grace Gives Back” program.

Public Education Foundation of Marion County
1239 NW 4th St. Ocala, FL 34475
352.671.4167 |
Meghan Magamoll |
Mission Statement: To financially and materially support Marion County Public Schools, its students, and teachers.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We are recruiting mentors for our Take Stock in Children program.
Signature Events: Xglosive Tennis for Take Stock in Children – November 8th, 2019 at the Fort King Tennis Center from 6:30–9:00 p.m. This is a fun family friendly glow in the dark tennis-themed event! For more information visit or call 352-671-4167.
Sneakers and Smores 5K Run and Walk – Saturday, January 18th at the Country Club of Ocala.
The Memorial Golf Tournament – Saturday and Sunday, January 18th and 19th at the Country Club of Ocala.
Moot Thomas Golf Scramble – Monday, January 20th at the Country Club of Ocala.
Event information at or call 352-671-4167.

R.A.M.A.L. Educational and Social Services, Inc.
1636 SW 31st Ave. Ocala, FL 34474
352.873.1319 |
Barbara J. Brooks, Ph.D.:
Mission Statement: To provide information, training, and life coaching which will empower, inspire, and motivate individuals to improve their lives and the community in which they live.

St Johns Luthern School
1915 SE Lake Weir Ave Ocala Florida 34471
Mission Statement: Saints Alumni & Friends come together to foster continued excellence in academics, athletics, social, and spiritual growth, and Christian Service as exemplified in the founding and continuing mission of St. John Lutheran School.


Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute
23695 US-27, High Springs, FL 32643
386.454.9369 |
Tessa Skiles, Outreach director:
Mission Statement: The mission of the Florida Springs Institute is to provide a focal point for improving the understanding of springs ecology and to foster the development of science-based education and management actions needed to restore and protect springs throughout Florida.

Silver Springs Alliance, Inc.
550B Midway Drive, Ocala, FL 34472
352.537.5499 |
John Dunn, vice president:
Mission Statement: Silver Springs Alliance’s focus is on restoration and prevention of the further deterioration of the Silver Springs ecosystem.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Our current project is to help restore the natural functioning of Silver Springs and the Silver River by removal of the Kirkpatrick Dam.


Florida Thoroughbred Charities, Inc.
801 S. W. 60th Ave., Ocala, FL 34474
352.629.2160 |
Lonny Powell:
Mission Statement: Florida Thoroughbred Charities is administered by the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders and Owners Association with the mission to fund charitable organizations within the Thoroughbred industry, the City of Ocala, Marion County, and the State of Florida.

Horse Farms Forever
P.O. Box 5279, Ocala, FL 34478-5279
859.553.5510 |
Sara Fennessy, director of community affairs:
Mission: To inspire the conservation of horse farms through education and awareness so as to preserve natural pasture land focusing on horses and their habitats, and to protect the soil and water on which they depend, while minimizing land use conflicts in Marion County.

Horse Protection Association of Florida
20690 NW 130th Ave., Micanopy, FL 32667
352.466.4366 |
John Sturm |
Mission Statement: Equine rescue, rehabilitation, education and adoption services. Assistance to law enforcement and animal agencies with cruelty investigations and the care and placement of horses. Promote horse care and humane, natural methods of training for horses.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Acquire a farm that is suitable for Horse Protection programs (rescue, training, adoption, sanctuary). Increase donations to $500.000 annually in order to help a greater number of horses in need in Marion County and to be able to accept horses at Marion County Animal Services needing placement.

Marion Therapeutic Riding Association (MTRA)
6850 SE 41st Court, Ocala, FL 34480
352.732.7300 |
Pam Morrison:
Mission Statement: MTRA strives to offer the miraculous benefits of therapeutic horseback riding and equine facilitated learning to persons of all ages and capabilities that are physically, mentally, or emotionally challenged.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: To increase funding for the growing veterans program, Freedom Reins, and the Equine Experience program for foster children and at-risk youth.
Upcoming Events:
November 30th: Holiday Market and Antique Cars show
January 19th: Florida Mini Match
February 24th: Fourth annual Golf Tournament
March 1st: HITS Family Fun Day
March 21st: Poker Run


Crossroads Alliance and Ministries
P.O. Box 1000, Silver Springs, FL 34480
352.209.8777 |
Darlene Kelly:
Mission Statement: Crossroads Alliance and Ministries is changing lives through compassion for people in need.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: CAM Honduras: CAM’s investment in this life-changing ministry involves developing campuses where a church, school, agriculture center, and trade and Bible school help those in the community rise out of their cycle of poverty. CAM is hopefully securing a school bus, or two, and will have this ministry in self-sustaining status by the end of 2019.

Faithfully Guided Health Center
40 SW First Ave.,Ocala, FL, 34471
352.512.0631 |
Ashlee Seek:
Mission Statement: Our mission is to provide faith-based, lifestyle health care.

FLIP FLOP Support Groups, Inc.
1629 NW Fourth St., Ocala, FL 34475
352.361.1206 |
Jacalyn Brown:
Mission Statement: Facilitating the success of families with loved ones in prison, families with loved ones out of prison, utilizing tools to show them that their challenge is unique but not uncommon and can be conquered through networking, self-improvement, and support in a spiritually-based setting.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We are currently working towards a partnership with the Boys & Girls Club of Marion County to identify, assess, and provide aid for children of incarcerated individuals.

Frank DeLuca YMCA Family Center
3200 SE 17th St., Ocala, FL 34471
352.368.9622 |
Kelli Garcia:
Mission Statement: Our mission at the Frank DeLuca YMCA is to put Christian principles into practice through programs that build health, spirit, mind, and body for all.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We believe everyone deserves the YMCA. That’s why we offer financial assistance to individuals and families. In 2019, our goal is to raise $500,000 so that we can continue to support our neighbors in need.

Harvest International, Inc.
3711 NE 42nd Lane, Ocala, FL 34479
352.622.1818 |
Pam Barrett:
Mission Statement: Physically and spiritually touching lives.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We would like to have 1,000 Buckets of Love ready for the 2019 Hurricane season.

Interfaith Emergency Services, Inc.
435 NW Second St., Ocala FL 34475
352.629.8868 |
Sonya Tyler:
Mission Statement: Interfaith Emergency Services is a community of faith, called by God to offer emergency assistance without judgment to all persons in Marion County.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: To double the number of people receiving free medical, dental, and mental health services while we continue to provide for those who struggle to have their basic needs.

Love INC of the Heart of Florida
15797 S. US Highway 441, Summerfield, FL 34491
352.245.8774 |
Barbara Briggs:
Mission Statement: To mobilize local churches to transform lives and communities in the name of Christ.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Expanding our mission of improving the overall health status of Marion County residents by providing quality primary medical, dental, behavioral, maternity, and pharmacy services to all residents, but in particular to those residents who would not otherwise be able to access the services due to financial limitations and/or lack of health insurance.
Soon we will be moving many of our services to our new building providing the ability to see more patients as well as a one of a kind “One-Stop” Medical Home for patients.

My Life Counsel
24 NE 14th Ave., Ocala, Fl. 34470
352.362.3671 |
Scott Inman, M.A., founder and executive director:
Mission Statement: Our mission is to renew faith, hope, and intentionality in individuals, marriages and families.

Pay It Forward Outreach Corp
2203 SE 28 Place, Ocala, FL 34471
352.620.8545 |
Rev. William Bender, president:
Mission Statement: To empower the family unit through educational growth and emotional support so the family will gain stability and self-worth through the Gospel.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Our goal this year is to obtain a larger facility, around 10,000 square-feet. With 3,000 square-foot for conference and media rooms, we can expand our educational health and financial teaching programs. We believe education is the next step to freedom and breaking the generational assistance given through the government. Sustainable living not only through a sustainable and secure home but also through education.

Redeemer Christian School
155 SW 87th Place, Ocala, FL 34476
352.854.2999 |
Lisa Villella, office manager:
Mission Statement: Our mission is to serve students through a rigorous, biblically integrated program of instruction, educating them to live in a community with grace and excellence.

Unlimited Discipleship Ministries, Inc.
4560 SE 120th St., Belleview, FL 34420
352.427.8607 |
Mike and Wendy Behar:
Mission: Our mission is to assist men and women in the preparation, restoration, and growth in their marriage.

Wear Gloves, Inc.
1469 N. Magnolia Avenue, Unit B, Ocala, FL 34475
352.342.5487 |
Ken Kebrdle |
Mission Statement: Serve those that God puts in our path, teach others to love like Jesus, and advocate for the most distressed in our community.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We would like to open a bakery and be able to employ those in need to earn what they need.

Family and Community Services

911 Cell Phone Bank
626 S. Pine Ave., Ocala, FL 34471
352.512.0204 |
Bob Mikler:
Mission Statement: Since 2004, the 911 Cell Phone Bank has provided more than 100,000 devices to vulnerable and needy residents in communities nationwide — all at no cost. Over the years we have given emergency cell phones to victims of abuse and senior citizens, tablets to women’s shelters, laptops to law enforcement and smartphones to teachers for use in high school app development courses.

Altrusa International Foundation of Ocala
P.O. Box 4228, Ocala, FL 34478
352.732.7020 |
Colleen M. Duris, president:
Mission Statement: Altrusa International strives to improve our community by providing services, developing leadership, fostering international understanding and encouraging fellowship through a network of dedicated volunteers.
2020 Signature event: Altrusa Trivia Night on March 7, 2020.

Creative Services, Inc.
1910 S. Pine Ave., Ocala, FL 34471
352.355.2928 |
Chris Azar:
Mission Statement: Creative Services Inc. aids, comforts, and empowers victims of domestic violence and sexual assault.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Creative Services, Inc. strives to meet the needs of those Marion County residents seeking safe and secure emergency shelter, as well as continuing to aid, comfort, and empower survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault along their personal journey of healing and recovery through counseling and advocacy. Creative Services, Inc. is honored to serve our community by continually expanding the capacity of our certified Domestic Violence Shelter, and providing survivors with advocates.

The Genesis 7 Project
352.512.1120 |
Robert & Xochi Smith:
Mission Statement: To awaken the potential, purpose and promise of today’s youth through community and spreading love.
Goal and Objective: Many of today’s youth are living unsupervised, in shelters, on the streets or with parents/guardians in crisis. The Genesis 7 Project is a faith based, 501(c)(3) that enables the community, churches, and local businesses to share Christ’s love to these children, teens, and families in our community. Our program collaborates with parents, schools, churches and community leaders to thoroughly support today’s youth and together help provide greater opportunities for them.
Signature Events: Christmas Community celebration “The Gift”.
College Tour Fundraiser.
Graduate Celebration.
“The Center” Summer block party.
“Stock The Rock.”

Help Agency in the Forest
16890 E Highway 40 Silver Springs, FL 34488
(352) 625-1900
Mission Statement: Providing
assistance to those in need in the Marion County area.

Ignite Community Counseling & Resource Center
3561 S. Pine Ave., Ocala, Florida
352.512.0090 |
Mission: Mental health organization offering mental health services for trauma, addiction, anxiety, depression, spiritual issues and much more. We specialize in igniting hope and empowering lives.

Kiwanis Foundation- Ocala Chapter
PO BOX 682, Ocala, FL 34478
Nick Navetta:
Mission Statement: The Kiwanis Club of Ocala is dedicated to serving the local community, especially children, through various service and fundraising projects. Our club has been in service to Ocala and the surrounding area for more than 90 years. We are part of KIWANIS INTERNATIONAL, an International organization serving local communities for over 100 years.

Law Enforcement Agasint Destructive Decisions
Lynn Nicely | 904-826-7288
Mission Statement: To save the lives of our young people from distracted driving.

Ocala On Top of the World Lions Club
P.O. Box 772733, Ocala, FL 34474
352.425.6316 |
Estelle Michaelson:
Mission Statement: To empower volunteers to serve their communities, meet humanitarian needs, encourage peace, and promote international understanding through Lions Clubs.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Establish Lions Quest, a social and emotional learning process in at least one school or other early learning center in Marion County.

Unity Family Community Center, Inc.
20030 NE 23rd PL, Williston, FL 32696
352.529.2030 |
Keila Legall |
Mission Statement: To improve the quality of life of families and individuals by providing services and opportunities designed to create a culture of C.A.R.E.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Our goal for 2019–2020 is to implement an after-school program (S.W.A.G. 2.0) at no cost in Marion County. Also, to increase our capacity, UFCC is developing a capital campaign to construct an administration building with an estimated cost of $250,000.

United Way of Marion County
1401 NE 2nd St., Ocala FL 34470
352.732.9696 |
Scot Quintel |
Mission Statement: Uniting local resources to help our neighbors.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: United Way of Marion County and its partners are working to build a prosperous community by focusing our efforts on three key goals by 2022: First, increase the early childhood literacy rate by 10 percent. Second, help an additional 600 individuals achieve financial stability. Third, provide permanent housing for 375 individuals.
Signature Event:2020 Community Care Gala on January 30, 2020 at On Top of the World, Circle Square Commons. Join United Way “Under The Big Top” for an unforgettable evening of entertainment, upscale American fare, and sideshow acts that will amaze and astound! It’s the greatest show in Marion County! Proceeds will support United Way’s Community Care Fund. Tickets are $100. For more details visit

Xtreme SOULutions
P.O. Box 5487, Ocala, FL 34478
352.694.4888 |
Shirley Beattie
Mission: We empower people to create a future for themselves and their children, building a strong community with moral values, financial stability, and hope for generations to come. We are committed to partnerships that will lead the way in successfully building up those who are prepared to do their part in positive growth and development and to help break the cycle of government welfare assistance and poverty.


Believe in Santa Foundation, Inc.
11150 N. Williams St., Suite 108, Dunnellon, FL 34432
561.509.5776 Ext. 1225 |
Keith Carson:
Mission Statement: The Believe in Santa Foundation is a public service all-volunteer organization focused on improving life. Without any expectation of compensation, the foundation is dedicated to serving all children in need. We put people before profits, regardless of race, creed, color, or sexual orientation.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We are in the planning stages of building a North Pole in this area to serve special needs, terminally ill, and other children in need. It will be open year-round.

College of Central Florida Foundation, Inc.
3001 SW College Road, Ocala, FL 34474
352.873.5808 |
Dawn Gonsalves:
Mission Statement: The College of Central Florida Foundation’s mission is to identify, solicit, and acquire restricted and unrestricted resources to support the college in providing educational services to Citrus, Levy, and Marion Counties.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: “Reaching Higher” Campaign—This is a $20 million comprehensive campaign to raise resources for: Health Sciences, scholarships, Appleton Museum of Art, and Agri-business and Equine programs at CF.

Community Foundation for Ocala Marion County
324 SE 24th St. Ocala, FL 34471
352.622.5020 |
Lauren Deiorio:
Mission Statement: Connecting the charitable interests of the donor to build a better community.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: The Community Foundation is working towards the establishment of a Nonprofit Resource Center.

Marion County Sheriff’s Office Foundation
P.O. Box 1987, Ocala FL 34478
352.368.3582 |
Gary Skogsbergh, Sr. President:
Mission Statement: We pledge to serve as a nonprofit organization for the Marion County Sheriff’s Office by engaging in fundraising activities to support community programs, the Sheriff’s Office budget, and volunteer functions.

Ocala Lions Club Charities Foundation
P.O. Box 801, Ocala, FL 34476
352.854.6715 |
Audrey Hall:
Mission Statement: The Ocala Lions Club is a collegial, congenial group, dedicated to the proposition that collectively we can do more than we can as individuals. Our focus is on the preservation and enhancement of sight and hearing.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Our goal is to be able to expand our outreach and provide services to even more people in need.
Signature Event: The Ocala Lions Club Jerry Cullison Memorial Golf Tournament, which is played at Ocala Golf Club on the first Saturday of December every year, which is December 7th this year. This will be our 26th annual tournament. It is limited to 31 foursomes because we have hole-in-one prizes on every par 3, which include a car, a boat, a Harley Davidson motorcycle, and $10,000. We provide coffee and doughnuts, drinks and lunch, and have door prizes including a big screen TV.

Ocala Rotary Foundation, Inc
P.O. Box 104., Ocala FL 34478
352.732.7080 |
Jonathan Dean:
Mission Statement: To receive and administer funds for scientific, education, and charitable purposes.

QuitDoc Foundation
807 B SW Third Ave., Ocala, FL 34471
352.359.5383 |
Barry Hummel:
Mission Statement: To improve overall community health and wellness by reducing the number of deaths in the United States from tobacco addiction and curtailing tobacco use within youth and adult populations through research, education, and prevention.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We are currently working on a youth online cessation support video series on tobacco health and tobacco-free policies for county parks.

Homelessness /Poverty

Brother’s Keeper (Blessed Trinity Catholic Church)
320 NW 10th St., Ocala 34475
Office 352.622.3846
Thrift Store 352.732.7988
Soup Kitchen 352.789.8139
Jason Halstead:
Mission Statement: Brother’s Keeper, in cooperation with the pastor of Blessed Trinity Catholic Church and community agencies, is committed to assist the poor and needy of Marion County and other areas without regard to race, creed, or ethnic origin.

Deliverance Outreach Ministries
821 NE 36th Terrace, Suite 10, Ocala, FL 34470
352.209.8777 |
Felicia Miller:
Mission Statement: Our mission is to help people with their needs and conduct humanitarian outreach.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: To continue to help as many non-insured and homeless citizens as possible.

Habitat for Humanity of Marion County, Inc.
P.O. Box 5578, Ocala, FL 34478
352.351.4663 |
Tori Arens |
Mission Statement: Putting God’s love into action in Marion County by strengthening communities, building hope, and providing dignified housing solutions through partnership and empowerment.
Signature Events: Seventh Annual Habitat Ocala Strawberry Festival on March 7th, 2020. Featuring live music, food and drinks, vendors, pet contest, car show, pie eating, kid zones and strawberries! Event details: Also, the Fourth Annual Strawberry Jam 5K, winding through beautiful Ocala neighborhoods. Details: Then don’t miss Hookin’ for Habitat Fishing Tournament on March 14th, 2020. For more information:

Helping Hands Foundation, Inc.
101 NE 16th Avenue, Ocala, FL 34470
352.732.4464 |
Mission: Helping Hands is a nonprofit charity, serving the people of Ocala/Marion County. It was established to provide shelter and related assistance for the homeless, and others who are in difficult situations. Besides shelter, we assist our residents with jobs, food, clothes, medical, dental, transportation, counseling, Bible study and fellowship, and other needed services.

Marion County Homeless Council, Inc.
108 N. Magnolia Ave., Suite 202, Ocala, FL 34475
352.732.1369 |
Angela Juaristic:
Mission Statement: Eliminate homelessness in Marion County by providing housing assistance while serving as the Continuum of Care (CoC) lead agency.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: In 2019–2020, we hope to increase the number of families that remain housed through prevention. We welcome donations including monetary (which is used to pay for items not covered by grants such as baby formula, work boots, uniforms, bus passes to work, and basic necessities) as well as donations of sunscreen, hats, mosquito repellant, rain ponchos, zip lock baggies or pencil cases to product documents and small hygiene products. Every item donated is distributed to homeless individuals and families encountered and needing protection from the Florida elements.

Ocala Housing Authority
1629 NW Fourth St., Ocala FL 34478
352.369.2636 |
James Haynes:
Mission Statement: The Ocala Housing Authority is committed to providing and expanding safe, decent, and sanitary housing in the most efficient manner, to the residents of Marion county; to provide economic opportunities and housing free from illegal discrimination; and to build better neighborhoods by providing comprehensive opportunities for our residents through partnerships and networking within our community.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We are working towards increasing our rental housing stock and expanding homeownership opportunities for low-income families.

Project Hope of Marion County
830 NE 28 St., Ocala FL 34470
352.624.4673 |
Mike Amsden:
Mission Statement: Our mission is to support homeless families in Marion County progress out of homelessness by providing transitional housing as well as programs that encourage self-sufficiency.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Expansion of units available for transitional housing.

Open Arms Village, Inc.
1839 NE Eight Road, Ocala, Fl. 34470
352.304.6229 |
Michael Patrick Smith:
Mission Statement: Open Arms Village exists to create a safe and healthy residential community that treats homeless men with dignity. We provide a full array of programs and services that men can use to move themselves towards independence.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: With our continuing success, we are working to create a greater community awareness! Many of our men are available to speak with your church, club, or civic organization. The stories are amazing and will certainly encourage needed growth of our donor base.

The Salvation Army of Marion County
2901 NE 14th St, Ocala, FL 34470
352-629-2004 |
Mission Statement: The Salvation Army, an international movement, is an evangelical part of the universal Christian Church. Its message is based on the Bible. Its ministry is motivated by the love of God. Its mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.

Saving Mercy
3601 W. Silver Springs Blvd.,Ocala, FL, 34475
352.629.6902 |
Mark Lindsay:
Mission Statement: We are hope and help for the homeless in Marion County.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: The Mercy Inn & RV Park will be working to develop and provide affordable housing options, case management, and wraparound support services for the homeless at our newly acquired property at 3601 West Silver Springs Blvd (formerly the Motor Inns & RV Park).


Florida Institute for Human & Machine Cognition (IHMC)
15 SE Osceola Ave., Ocala, FL 34471
352.387.3050 |
Laurie Zink:
Mission Statement: The Institute for Human & Machine Cognition (IHMC) pioneers technologies aimed at leveraging and extending human capabilities. IHMC faculty and staff collaborate extensively with industry and government to develop science and technology that can be enabled with respect to society’s broader goals.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Continuing to offer our evening lecture series to the community at large and to expand our Science Saturday and Robotics Camp scholarship programs.

Public Policy Institute of Marion County, Inc.
The Enterprise Center, 3001 SW College Rd, Suite 202, Ocala, FL 34474
352.854.2322 ext. 1457 |
Toni James:
Mission Statement: To give the community a sense of hope and optimism by creating a broad base of community involvement in identifying, researching, and establishing dialogue on community-wide issues and then in recommending and helping to implement timely solutions.
Goal/objective 2020: The goal for 2020 is to run a study on all the issues related to healthy children — physical, mental, social, and educational.


Early Learning Coalition of Marion County
2300 SW 17th Rd Ocala, FL 34471
352.369.2315 |
Elizabeth Denola:
Mission Statement: To provide leadership and foster partnerships to optimize a quality early-learning environment for our children through childcare, Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten (VPK), and parent education.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: In the fiscal year 2019–2020, the Coalition team will be implementing the Help Me Grow program in Marion County. This program helps to identify children in need of developmental, behavioral, or learning support, and connects them with community-based services at no cost. Services include screenings, information, resources and materials, referrals, and family networking opportunities. Two key partners are United Way’s 2-1-1 and Healthy Start of North Central Florida.

Friends of the Forest Public Library, Inc.
905 S. Hwy, County Road 314 A, Ocklawaha, FL 32179
352.438.2540 |
David Freudenburg:
Mission Statement: The ongoing purpose of the Friends of the Forest Public Library to promote and develop the Forest Public Library facilities in Forest Corners and Marion County by enhancing community awareness, understanding, and use of the library in cooperation with the Library Board and the Library Director through supplemental financial assistance and direct voluntary support.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Promoting new members for bringing fresh ideas and talents, with hands-on abilities to continue to support the Forest community and library.

Friends of Freedom Public Library, Inc.
5870 SW 95th St., Ocala, FL 34476
352.438.2580 |
Susan Sullivan:
Mission Statement: To cooperate with and support the Freedom Public Library in the development and promotion of library services, resources, and facilities for the community and to encourage and receive gifts, endowments, and bequests to the library to provide supplemental financial assistance.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Creating awareness of the Freedom Friends’ work across the library’s service area.

Friends of the Marion Oaks Public Library, Inc. (FOTMOPL)
294 Marion Oaks Lane, Ocala, FL 34473
352.438.2575 |
Irma McNeal, vice president:
Mission Statement: The mission of the FOTMOPL is to promote the perpetual existence of the library by supporting it and cooperating in the development of services, resources, and facilities of the community.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Completion of library refurbishing and continued support of library in all its functions.

Friends of the Ocala Public Library
2720 E. Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala, FL 34470
352.368.4591 |
Bridget Kiefer, Vice President:
Mission Statement: To promote and develop the public library in Ocala by enhancing community awareness, understanding, and use of the library in cooperation with the library director through supplemental financial assistance and voluntary support.

Marion County Literacy Council
120 SW Fifth St., Ocala, FL 34471
352.690.7323 |
Yamila Acosta:
Mission Statement: All adult citizens of Marion County should have a resource available to help them improve their literacy skills.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We are working towards more community partnerships to offer our programs to more potential students as well as growing our correctional institution programs, public school programs, and working with probation and parole.

The Friends of the Fort McCoy Public Library
14660 NE Highway 315, Fort McCoy, FL 32134
Mary L. Thomas:
Mission Statement: This corporation was formed for the advancement of education by distributing its funds for the promotion and development of the public library facilities in the city of Fort McCoy, Florida, as well as to encourage the use of such facilities.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We hope to secure grant funds to renovate our auditorium. (Our building was once used as a school.) If successful, we will have state-of-the-art equipment for presentations, which will make the library a much-needed venue for local clubs and classes.
Event: This past year the Friends of the Fort McCoy Library received a $7000 grant from Clay Electric and we purchased a wireless projector and large screen so community organizations will be able to use the library for meetings and presentations. We’re hosting a Community Celebration and Block Party at the library on November 2 from 11 a.m.–2 p.m. There will be free food, fun for kids, lots of organizations with information, and door prizes.


Friends of the Christmas Parade
5184 SE 20th St., Ocala, FL 34480
352.624.2022 |
William Taylor:
Mission Statement: To support the
Ocala Christmas Parade tradition for over 60 years.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We are working each year to make the event more enjoyable for the community.

Ocala Main Street
405 SE Osceola Ave. Ocala, Fl 34471
352.421.0047 |
Jessica Marr, Executive Director:
Mission: To create a thriving, unique, and livable downtown that enriches the community, embraces history, celebrates the arts, and promotes quality events to instill a sense of place in our community.

Health and Medicine

American Heart Association
1202 SW 17th St., #201-167, Ocala, FL 34471
Kristina Donohue, regional director of Marion County
Mission: To be a relentless force for longer, healthier lives.
Signature Event: Marion County Heart Walk on September 2020.
Go Red for Women on March 5, 2020 at Circle Square Cultural Center.

Cancer Alliance
2020 SE 17th St. Ocala, FL 34471
Linda Koontz, Director:
Mission: Founded by H.U.G.S. Charities because Marion County needed a collective cancer care community that could collaborate, communicate, and educate together for the greatest impact.

Community Cancer Education, Inc., DBA 21st Century C.A.R.E.
2234 Colonial Blvd., Fort Myers, FL 33907
239.936.3756 |
Liz Luna:
Mission Statement: Provide cancer education at the community level to patients, cancer care providers, and the general public; support cancer research and provide financial assistance to cancer patients in need.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We are planning a skin cancer screening in the coming year and are partnering with local retailers nationally to raise funds.

Estella Byrd Whitman Wellness & Community Resource Center
819 NW Seventh St. Ocala, FL 34475
352.825.2226 |
Pamela Lewin, M.D.:
Mission Statement: To provide accessible preventative primary care, medical, and dental services to the underserved and uninsured residents of Tucker Hill in the 34475 postal area, without regard to age, race, gender identity, disability, religion, or ability to pay.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We would like to become accredited to see medical, dental, and mental health patients in our facility.

Heart of Florida Health Center
203 E. Silver Springs Blvd., #101, Ocala, FL 34470
352.877.7142 |
Heather James:
Mission Statement: Our mission is to improve the overall health status of Marion County residents by providing quality primary medical, dental, and mental health services to all residents. In particular, to those residents who have financial and insurance limitations.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Expanding our mission of improving the overall health status of Marion County residents by providing quality primary medical, dental, behavioral, maternity, and pharmacy services to all residents, but in particular to those residents who would not otherwise be able to access the services due to financial limitations and/or lack of health insurance. Soon we will be moving many of our services to our new building providing the ability to see more patients as well as a one of a kind “One-Stop” Medical Home for patients.

H.U.G.S. Charities
P.O. Box 34, Ocala, FL 34478
Rhoda Walkup |
Mission Statement: The H.U.G.S. organization encourages heartfelt unconditional giving to benefit cancer patients and the fight against cancer through the creation and support of its community cancer alliance.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We hope to continue helping meet the non-medical needs of those facing cancer in Marion County and equipping them to get to treatment, nourishment, and shelter.
Signature Event: A silent auction on March 26, 2020 honoring the late David Tuck. Tickets and donations can be made at

March of Dimes
P.O. Box 3153, Harlan, IA 51593-0344
352.502.5752 |
Tammy Dygert, Executive Director:
Mission Statement: March of Dimes leads the fight for the health of all moms and babies.
Signature Event: Our 2020 Marion County March for Babies walk event is Saturday, April 25 at the Baseline Trailhead. This year marks the 50th anniversary of our walk events (and the 82nd anniversary of March of Dimes as an organization).

21765 SW 106 Lane Road, Dunnellon, FL 34431
352.469.6006 |
Justin Lamb, Advanced Imaging Ocala Health:
Mission Statement: The Michelle-O-Gram exists to provide breast imaging services for the uninsured and underinsured women and men in our community. We are celebrating our 10th Anniversary and are proud to have served nearly 1500 individuals, both women and men. Men do get breast cancer. The healthcare situation continues to change, referrals come to the Michelle-O-Gram via physician offices, free clinics, Heart of FL, American Cancer Society, Marion County Health Department as well as self referrals.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We hope to increase exposure in the community — after seven years we continually learn of those who have never heard of the Michelle-O-Gram.

AdventHealth Auxiliary, Inc.
1500 SW First Ave. Ocala, Florida
352.671.2153 |
John Christman, Auxiliary President
Jennifer Poole Wood, director:
Mission Statement: As a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) service organization, the AdventHealth Auxiliary, Inc. is committed to supporting good health in our community. We actively sponsor programs and services which enhance the lives of our community residents in their homes and in the hospital. Utilizing the skills and dedication of volunteers and staff, the Healthy Home program provides the elderly patient after a hospital discharge, non-clinical services such as food, well-check telephone calls, transportation to their doctor and safe home modifications. These social determinants of health, when met, assist in providing for a healing home environment for our elderly neighbors. All services are provided free of charge. The revenue from the AdventHealth Hospital Gift Shop funds this nationally recognized volunteer program.

NAMI Marion County, Inc.
P.O. Box 5753, Ocala, FL 34478-5753
352.368.2405 |
Diana Williams |
Mission Statement: Educate, support, and advocate for people diagnosed with mental illness and their family and friends.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: NAMI Marion County will be initiating mental wellness screenings in outlying areas of Marion County to enable people to identify if they have a problem; we will also provide telehealth counseling for those people via Meridian Behavioral Health Services. In addition, NAMI Marion County is working with the Marion County Mental Wellness Coalition to develop a plan to have a clubhouse-type of walk-in center for referred people with mental illness.

Ocala Royal Dames for Cancer Research, Inc.
P.O. Box 6163, Ocala, FL 34478
352.622.7363 |
Joan Audette:
Mission Statement: To ensure strong local and regional effort in the fight against cancer through funding research and education.

Three Angels Clinic
4817 NE Second Loop, Bldg. B, Ocala FL, 34470
352.509.6350 |
Dr. Kevin Barret, Executive Director/Trustee:
Mission: A private, independent, faith-based clinic priding itself on having a wonderful selection of experienced and caring medical professionals and volunteers dedicated to serving the sick in our community.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: For 2019–2020, we hope to increase community ownership through individual financial support and donations, increase the number of Marion County and Ocala residents served who have no medical provider or are uninsured, and obtain at least one hospital support for select patients to get labs, diagnostics, and pharmacy services.

Senior Care

Hawthorne Village Retirement Community
4100 SW 33rd Ave Ocala FL 34474
Mission Statement: Providing state-of-the-art treatment with the benefits of a not-for-profit provider. Our priority is to ensure every resident is treated with respect, love, and the best possible
care available.

Hospice of Marion County
3231 SW 34th Ave., Ocala, FL 34474
352.873.7400 |
Cindy Moody:
Mission Statement: We provide exceptional compassionate end-of-life care to our community.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Memorial Park for our Estelle’s and Monarch Center Campus: Set in the serene setting between Estelle’s House and the Monarch Center for Hope and Healing, the Memorial Park offers peaceful respite for meditation, remembrance, and celebration. This campus has recently been named the Helen “Mimi” Walker Campus. Our landscaped park features red brick paving stones and a granite memorial wall. Both may be engraved in memory or in honor of a loved one. The Veterans Circle of Honor is a tribute to either living or departed veterans who have served our great country. A brick paving stone may be engraved with an honoree’s name, branch of service, and dates of service. There are also five individual Branch of Service Monuments available for a name and military rank to be engraved.
Signature Events: November is Hospice Month—Join us for two veterans events: Nov. 1 we’re hosting nationally known author and nurse Deborah Grassman who’ll give a presentation in the Elliott Center from 8:30–10:00 a.m.; she’ll share her unique experiences caring for veterans over her 30-year career with the Department of Veterans Affairs. On Nov. 16, at the Memorial Park, from 10:00–11:30 a.m., Hospice of Marion County will hold a Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans ceremony with local dignitaries, high school choir, and color guard in attendance. All events are open to the public at no charge.

Marion Senior Services
1101 SW 20th Court, Ocala, FL 34471
352.620.3501 |
Cassandra Jackson:
Mission Statement: Assisting the elderly, disabled, and disadvantaged residents of Marion County to maintain independent living status.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Gaining additional financial and volunteer support for In-Home Support services. We have over 800 seniors requesting additional support with their daily living activities and if we could address their needs, we could avoid those seniors becoming at risk for further health issues.


Special Olympics Florida, Inc.
2800 S.E. Maricamp Road, Building #2, Ocala, FL 34471
352.988.7998 |
Sandy Hopkins, sports director of Marion County:
Mission Statement: The mission of Special Olympics is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities for physical fitness.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: For 2019, our goal is to integrate health initiatives into schools, increase healthy athletes’ programs and see a wider influence within Marion County and the rest of Florida. We also have a newly added Young Athletes program for kids between the ages of two and seven.


Ocala Blue Star Mothers
8470A SW 92nd Lane, Ocala, FL 34481
843.504.0032 |
Tina Shumway:
Mission Statement: Our mission is to support our active duty military, our veterans, and the families of the fallen.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Provide items for veterans who receive services through the Gainesville VA Hospital in the form of new clothes and shoes as well as flip flops and other items requested by the hospital to help veterans who are going into transitional housing, i.e., dishes.

Veterans Helping Veterans USA., Inc.
2730 E. Silver Springs Blvd., Suite 200, Ocala, FL 34470
352.433.2320 |
Hank Whittier:
Mission Statement: To assist veterans and their families who need social services and information to improve their lives and to assist them in maintaining their independence.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Training and employment for veterans.

Women’s Charities

GFWC Woman’s Club of Ocala, Inc.
P.O. Box 4444, Ocala, FL 34478
352.687.1211 |
Sonia Palmer, President:
Mission Statement: Working together to strengthen our community and enhance the lives of others through community service.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Our goals for the coming year are two-fold: increase membership and fundraising. These would enable our club members to volunteer in more areas of need in the county and also to have more funds available for schools and other charitable organizations.

Our Hearts Align
179 NE 51st St., Ocala, FL 34479
352.274.4214 |
Kara Mangum:
Mission Statement: To provide physical and emotional comfort to moms, and their family, during and after a pregnancy loss. We provide this support through physical resources, personal support, prayer, and love.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: In the next year, we would like to develop additional resources to support the entire family unit during the loss of a baby. We want to not only support the mom but the father and siblings as well. We hope to do this by developing new books, print and digital resources, and community events.

PACE Center for Girls
328 NE First Ave., Suite 500, Ocala, FL 34470
352.369.0571 |
Kim Vollmer Smith:
Mission Statement: PACE provides all girls and young women an opportunity for a better future through education, counseling, training, and advocacy.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Looking to procure the facility we are currently leasing.

Philanthropic Educational Organization (P.E.O.)
9145 SW 70th Loop, Ocala, FL 34481
352.804.9924 |
Christy Cathcart:
Mission Statement: P.E.O. is a philanthropic organization where women celebrate the advancement of women; educate women through scholarships, grants, loans and stewardship of Cottey College; and motivate each other to achieve their highest aspirations.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We continually raise money to support all of our funds that support women’s educational goals.

Women Veterans In Crisis (WVIC)
2730 E. Silver Springs Blvd., Suite 200-6, Ocala, Florida 34470
352.533.2789 |
Mitchell Coulton, Executive Director:
Mission Statement: First in the nation to expand community-based resources to provide comprehensive mental health and social services to women veterans and their children, doing so with compassion, respect, excellence and integrity.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: WVIC’s current project is the establishment of a facility with 120 apartment-style rooms together with 100 transitional and permanent supported housing cabins (1- and 2-bedroom homes) on a 111-acre campus. On-site capacity will be roughly 180 women and 40 dependent children. The treatment campus is designed to mirror an Ocala horse farm. This approach reflects the movement away from institutional-looking facilities and takes advantage of Ocala’s beautiful rolling hills and pleasant climate. We are currently working with congress to provide legislation which will bring this project to fruition. To donate to this cause, please visit our website at


Arnette House, Inc.
2310 NE 24th St., Ocala, FL 34470
352.622.4432 |
JP Leard |
Mission Statement: To provide safe and effective programs to strengthen youth and families.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We are currently working on building the Sara Arnette Aquatic Center. We have completed stage one and are looking forward to starting stage two.

The Boys & Girls Club of Marion County
800 SW 12th Ave., Ocala, FL 34471
352.690.7545 |
Aaron McGlon:
Mission Statement: To enable all young people, especially those who need it the most, to become caring, productive, responsible citizens.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: World Class Club Experience. We want every young person to want to be a member of the club and every parent to want their kids to be members.

Children’s Home Society of Florida
226 NE Sanchez Ave., Ocala, FL 34470
352.732.1412 |
Christy Gibbons, program director:
Mission Statement: Building bridges to success for children.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Expansion of the Mid-Florida Community Counseling Program in Marion County to include tele-health services which will alleviate delay to services and provide the opportunity to serve more individuals.

Covenant Children’s Home
11350 N. Covenant Path, Dunnellon, FL 34434
352.489.2565 |
Debbie Davis:
Mission Statement: Covenant Children’s Home exists to provide children a home where a Christ-centered environment promotes health, hope, healing, and a brighter future in the lives of children who need the care and support of a loving community.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We are in the process of breaking ground on our second home, with the goal of building a total of five homes on our 24-acre campus.

Episcopal Children’s Services
8443 Baymeadow Road, Suite 1, Jacksonville, FL 32256
904.726.1500 |
Debbie Moore:
Mission Statement: Creating opportunities for children to reach their full potential.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Male Involvement Initiative — ECS is continuously striving to increase male involvement for our children through, not only our parents, but father figures and positive role models within our community. They are important influences on the school readiness of children and the well-being of families, overall. This initiative requires a lot of community involvement to be successful.

Florida Kids Helping Kids
3560 SE 137th Lane, Summerfield, FL 34491
352.347.0883 |
Gerri Gerthe:
Mission Statement: Kids Helping Kids, with the aid of adults, to become better citizens by teaching each other how to show compassion by helping other kids and our community in which we serve.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: We need volunteers for the Marion County Fair which will be April 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th located at the Marion Military Academy off of Baseline.

Francis Marion Military Academy, Inc.
5895 SE 83rd St., Ocala, FL 34472
352.245.6600 |
Charles deMenzes:
Mission Statement: Educate high school students in leadership, government, and business.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Increase our student population
in college.

Hands of Mercy Everywhere
6017 SE Robinson Road, Belleview, FL 34420
352.347.4663 |
Diane V. Schofield:
Mission Statement: To provide a Christian-based residential group home for teenage girls and pregnant or parenting teens in the foster care system.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Continued fundraising for the Grace House major remodel and the development of a vocational program for Independent Living Services and Training.

Junior Achievement (JA)
319 SE Broadway St., Ocala FL 34471
352.727.0178 |
Kristin Schreiner:
Mission Statement: To inspire and prepare young people to succeed in a global economy.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: JA BizTown Mobile for 5th-grade students would combine in-class learning with a day-long visit to a simulated town. This popular program allows elementary school students to operate banks, manage restaurants, write checks, and vote for mayor. The program would help Marion County students connect the dots between what they learn in school and the real world.
Signature Event: The annual Celebrate Junior Achievement Breakfast – Impact the Future is an opportunity to learn about the work that Junior Achievement is doing in our own community, see and hear from some of the kids who have directly benefited from JA programs, and learn about our newest program, JA BizTown.

Kids Central, Inc.
901 Industrial Drive, Suite 200, Wildwood, FL 34785
352.387.3419 |
Debra Wise-Velez:
Mission Statement: Protecting children, supporting families, and engaging communities.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Kids Central continuously works on keeping children from coming into the foster care system. Kids Central provides evidenced-based services to work in-home with parents who had a call to the child abuse hotline. These services assist in strengthening families and eliminating risks that brought them to the attention of the child abuse hotline.

Kimberly’s Center for Child Protection
2800 NE 14th St., Ocala, FL 34471
352.873.4739 |
Davis Dinkins:
Mission Statement: Our community working together to protect, serve, and advocate for abused and neglected children.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Kimberly’s Center will work towards raising funds sustaining our new Trauma Intervention Program for its second year in 2019 — $87,000. In addition, we will move forward on planning stages for installing a playground on our property. Lastly, we will continue to educate the community on child abuse prevention and awareness.

Marion County Children’s Alliance
3482 NW 10th St., Ocala, FL 34475
352.438.5990 |
Monica Bryant:
Mission Statement: To improve the lives of children in Marion County by providing resources that enable nonprofit organizations serving these children to operate more efficiently by providing safe and effective services of the highest quality.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: The Department of Children and Families verified 41 babies out of 154 that were exposed to substance abuse at birth. The Marion County Heroin and Opioid Task Force will be addressing this issue by collaborating with local, state, and regional agencies who serve pregnant moms and agencies that focus on family planning.

Marion County Junior Golf, Inc.
3130 E. Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala, FL 34470
352.362.2258 |
Jason Lenhart:
Mission Statement: We are organized to impact the lives of young people by providing learning facilities and educational programs that provide character development, instill life-enhancing values, and promote healthy choices through the game of golf.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Continuing to provide a safe environment in which young people can excel in learning, experiencing life, and being involved in a sport that could result in educational advancements as they near the college time frame.

Project LIFT (Life Initiative For Teens) Dunnellon
20540 E. Pennsylvania Ave., Dunnellon, FL 34432
352.465.9009 |
Bob Zaccheo, founder and executive director:
Mission Statement: Dedicated to improving the lives of at-risk teens and their families through substance abuse treatment, mental health counseling, mentoring, and vocational skills training.

Southeastern Youth Fair
2232 NE Jacksonville Road, Ocala, FL 34470
352.629.1255 |
Sara LeFils, Executive Director:
Mission Statement: To recognize the outstanding youth of Marion County through the Southeastern Youth Fair as a showcase for competition, exhibition, enhanced educational opportunities, and to promote self-esteem, personal growth, and development while aiding in the education of the Citizens of Marion County regarding the importance of agriculture and related industries in our area.
Signature event 2020: Southeastern Youth Fair 2020, February 21-29th.

The Pearl Project
625 NE 12th Ave., Ocala, FL 34470
352.405.5005 |
Beth Willis:
Joy Zedler, Executive Director:
Mission Statement: To help children from hard places discover that they are precious.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: The Pearl Project’s goals are building a trauma informed community. We do this by working with foster, adoptive, and kinship families, as well as biological families. The Pearl Project has recently begun facilitating the study, “Making Sense of Your (Past) Worth” both in office, as well as in the Marion County Jail as part of the WEST program. We look forward to continuing this work in Lowell Correctional Facility. This is a great opportunity for anyone who needs to come to terms with previous hurt.
Signature Events: The Pearl Project hosts a caregiver training in Trust Based Relational Intervention each month on second Fridays at Ocala Police Department. These trainings are scheduled throughout 2020.
The Pearl Project hosts a twice monthly support group at the Frank DeLuca YMCA for foster, adoptive and kinship families. This group meets twice a month, on Sundays from 2–4, child care is provided.
Each spring, The Pearl Project hosts Empower to Connect Conference.

Voices for Children of North Central Florida, Inc.
P.O. Box 4062, Ocala, FL 34478-4062
352.484.0319 |
Sue Carpenter:
Mission Statement: To support critical physical and psychological needs of children who have a Guardian ad Litem assigned to them. To support recruitment, training, and retention of volunteers who advocate for these children.
Goal and objective of 2019–2020: Expand the scope of our impact on the children who are in the judicial system and have a Guardian ad Litem appointed to their case; assist the Guardian ad Litem program in recruiting additional Guardian advocates; maintain our Normalcy program and increase our Christmas 4 Kids program.
Signature Event: Watch for our annual auction dinner in early summer, 2020.

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