How Lincoln Animal Ambassadors Helps Buddy

The pet food bank run by Lincoln Animal Ambassadors is a good place if you need dog food and can’t afford it.–Sharon

Every Monday and Thursday from 7 to 8 p.m., qualifying pet owners who qualify come to the Lincoln Animal Ambassadors food bank to get a month’s supply of free pet food, and sometimes other pet supplies. Sharon is one of those pet owners. She owns a lovable six-year-old male rat terrier named Buddy. Sharon heard about the pet food bank through word-of-mouth. Once a month, she receives a five-pound bag of dog food, canned food, and treats for Buddy. Sharon is thankful for the support that allows her to continue to care for Buddy. He follows her everywhere, and the two depend on one another.

Sharon is just one of about 230 recipients in 2017 to benefit from Lincoln Animal Ambassadors pet food bank. Volunteers are kept busy, serving between ten and fifteen clients during a typical night. In addition, during the Christmas season, the turnout may double, sometimes requiring clients to wait in line outside. Pet owners have frequently expressed heartfelt –and sometimes tearful–appreciation for the support the Lincoln Animal Ambassadors provides.

A bag of food can mean the difference of a pet living with their family or entering a shelter.–Pet Buddies Food Pantry

According to Pet Buddies Food Pantry, one out of six Americans live in poverty, with tens of millions of people living in poverty with pets. When those families are faced with the hard decision of giving up their pet, being able to turn to a pet food bank can make all the difference. Every year pet food banks not only help pets remain with their families, but they also ensure that desperate owners don’t harm their own health by sacrificing their meals for their pets. Pet food banks also help provide emotional relief to owners who can no provide for their pets. Some pet owners who are unable to afford both rent and pet food will choose homelessness rather than give up their pets. The bottom line is that if pets are family, you keep them with you even through the hard times, which is why pet food banks, like those operated by Lincoln Animal Ambassadors, are essential.

If you’re interested in helping, Lincoln Animal Ambassadors could use your assistance in both small and big ways. First, you can help spread the word about its services and needs. Says Ron Stowe, a volunteer with Lincoln Animal Ambassadors, “Word of mouth spreads our program. I’ve seen a noticeable increase in the amount of food we distribute, and an increase of people wanting to volunteer. All this has to mean something good is being done.”

Second, you can donate supplies to help the group support its current services. The Lincoln Animal Ambassador’s pet food bank relies on donations. Something that is very much needed, but typically doesn’t get donated, is cat litter.  Other accepted items are listed on Lincoln Animal Ambassadors’ website at Donate Pet Supplies. Summertime is a slow time for donations, when the food bank starts to run low. There are five local drop-off locations:

  • Petco North, 48th & O Street
  • Petco South, 56th & Highway 2
  • Super Saver, 27th & Cornhusker Highway
  • Super Saver, 56th & Highway 2
  • Matthew’s Episcopal Church, 2325 S. 24th St.

Third, you can donate money to help Lincoln Animal Ambassadors to serve the Lancaster area. Mary Douglas, president of Lincoln Animal Ambassadors, would like “to have support of the pet food bank by a Friends of the Pet Food Bank group, so that when we are low on canned food, or dry food, we could put the word out and that group would help out.”

Fourth, you can donate your time. Telephone interviewers are needed to process applications for the pet food bank. Volunteers are also needed to distribute food to clients on the nights that the food bank is open.

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