Shining the light on volunteers during National Volunteer Appreciation Month

John Lockwood, Fuzzy Friends founder, with pet food donations collected at a bake sale on Saturday, March 30.

Shining the light on volunteers during National Volunteer Appreciation Month
April 04
00:00 2019

John Lockwood’s Fuzzy Friends provides pet food to low income pet owners

By Judie Holcomb-Pack

April is National Volunteer Appreciation Month and The Chronicle will be highlighting a few of the people in our community who are making a difference through their volunteer service.

One such volunteer is John Lockwood. His volunteer service comes out of his love of animals. He has had his pet Corgi, Ashirah, who is now 20 years old, since John was 13. Not only does Lockwood care about animals, he cares particularly about hungry pets.

Lockwood worked at the Forsyth County Animal Shelter for about five years and then volunteered with the Humane Society’s A New Leash on Life, a program that trained service dogs in partnership with the Forsyth Correctional Center. He had seen hungry pets come into the animal shelter and they touched his heart. When the Humane Society discontinued their pet food pantry, Lockwood knew something had to be done.

As a member of St. Anne’s Episcopal Church, he approached the church about starting a group to work with different animal rescue groups. Ginny Wilder, rector of St. Anne’s, said, “John Lockwood had a vision that there was an unmet need in Winston-Salem and made a decision to meet that need. John has a servant’s heart and a sweet spot for our fuzzy friends and knew there were many animals going hungry through no fault of their own. With heart, love, and compassion, Fuzzy Friends Pet Food Pantry was born and has grown significantly over the past 18 months.”

Fuzzy Friends was originally under the church’s Outreach ministry, but it is now its own ministry with an advisory board. The first and third Fridays of the month the pet food pantry is open to offer food for dogs and cats. The pet food pantry serves those who are low income, on Medicare or Medicaid, or receive SNAP benefits, over age 70, or who are veterans.

Fuzzy Friends is also supported by Pet Supplies Plus located in the Reynolda Manor Shopping Center and where they held a bake sale this past Saturday, March 30, to raise money for the ministry. The amount of pet food they are able to give away depends on donations that they receive. Although members of St. Anne’s generously support the ministry, more donations are needed to provide food for pets so that they don’t go hungry.

Lockwood has seen what a blessing this ministry has been to pet owners in their thankfulness and appreciation when they pick up donated food. He recalls helping a veteran one day who started crying when he received a bag of dog food. He expressed how much it meant to him because he felt people didn’t care about veterans. It’s stories from people like this that keeps Lockwood committed to this ministry.

You can find John almost every day, helping at St. Anne’s and working in the Fuzzy Friends pet food pantry. Lockwood said, “I try to live by the motto of taking care of all God’s creatures, one meal at a time.”

If you would like to donate pet food to Fuzzy Friends, you can drop it off at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church, 2690 Fairlawn Drive. Please come in the back of the church where the office is located. Call 336-760-4319 to make sure someone is there to receive your donation.

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