Opposing Viewpoints has a very thorough list of social and political issues you can browse and select from. For each issue covered Opposing Viewpoints provides a selected cache of resources, including viewpoints from different sides of an issue, journal and magazine articles, news articles, websites, reference articles and more. A great place to start.
Academic Search Premier contains a mix of magazine and journal articles and covers every subject area imaginable. It is easy to find and identify academic peer reviewed journal articles.
The Web is a good source for information about local issues, events and controversies. But when using Web sources be very selective and critically evaluate the source and the organization sponsoring it.
For social and political issues there is a trick you can use when searching any web search engine that will limit your searches to certain types of organizations, such as government agencies (local and national), non-profit special interest organizations and educational institutions. The trick is adding an extension to your searches.
...site:.gov Governmental Agencies, local and national
...site:.org Special interest non-profit organizations and associations
...site:.edu Educational institutions
For example, to find out what the state of Arizona is doing about the issue of homeless veterans, you can enter:
This will retrieve websites and documents from only governmental agencies at all levels. This is often a great way to find information on policy and practice concerning your issue. You can do the same for site:.org and site:.edu.
site:.org searches retrieve websites and documents from special interest and advocacy groups, most of which are non-profit organizations. These organizations also collect and gather important information about the issues they are created to address and describe the services they offer. Carefully review and evaluate any organizational websites and documents you find for reliability and bias.
Want to find local partners for a service project or gather "on the ground" information? The United Way has created directories of social service agencies for each state in the United States. Start here, then enter your state or location to find local offices and organizations you can contact for information or work with.