Pets can count on Sophie's Circle in New Smyrna Beach and in Orange City

NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- The local unemployment rate is above 8 percent. More animals go hungry each day. See a connection? Hundreds of local families are not making enough money to pay for basic necessities. Granted there are government-run and personally-run programs that assist people in hard times but what about their pets?

Cheyenne DrewsCheyenne Drews and her friend, Haley DenneyCheyenne Drews, in larger photo, and with her friend, Haley Denney, are proud volunteers with Sophie's Circle, a dog and cat food pantry with locations in New Smyrna Beach and Orange City. 

Anyone who has a cat, dog, goldfish, horse, chicken or any pet at all knows that an animal is much more than just an animal. When you chose to adopt an animal, you gain a friend and a family member.

Sure, you might have those moments when it’s pouring rain and your dog just has to go out right then or people ask why you have cuts all over your arms and it’s because of your bipolar cat or the fish tank needs cleaning for the sixth time that week but -- it’s so worth it.

As an owner of two dogs and let’s just say, a few cats, I could never imagine having to give up my animals.

Being an only child, the only thing I’ve grown up around, besides my parents, are my dogs. I’m connected to them so deeply, and maybe, that’s why I’m so passionate about a nonprofit organization called Sophie’s Circle.

If you’ve never heard of this or have but wanted more information, read on! Sophie’s Circle was created by a woman named Kathy Blackman and together with Christi Sharp, Sophie’s Circle makes everyday miracles come true. Every day.

If you’ve never heard of this or have but wanted more information, read on! Sophie’s Circle was created by a woman named Kathy Blackman and together with Christi Sharp, Sophie’s Circle makes everyday miracles come true. Every day.

Sophie’s is a kind of food bank, but for pets. If there are people going through a hard time that are struggling to feed their animals, Sophie’s comes to the rescue. Open 8:30 a.m. to noon every Tuesday (Saturday at the Orange City location), rain or shine, Sophie’s Pet Food Pantry gives dry food, wet food, litter, treats and even toys to deserving animals.

Located at 560 Wayne Ave. in New Smyrna Beach, and at 125 West Ohio Ave., across from John’s Appliance City, in Orange City, Sophie’s operates strictly on donations. There’s just a simple sign-in for those receiving food; no identification required. All that is asked is that the animals are spayed or neutered and if they aren’t, they even help with the cost of it.

My friend, Haley Denney, and I volunteer whenever we find the opportunity. Last summer, we volunteered 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Wednesday in the heat, but every moment was so rewarding. We work hard bagging and handing out food but from time to time people bring in their pets and we get to see the difference we’re making and it’s priceless. Receiving food myself for my animals from Sophie’s every once and a while, it felt nice to give back. We fully intend on volunteering this summer as well and participate in every fundraiser we can. The beauty of the Internet is the simplicity of spreading the word.

You see, Sophie’s needs donations. Sophie’s "always" needs donations. Luckily around the holidays people are more charitable and they have a good amount of food to give away but when spring and especially when summer rolls around, the banks become empty.

Last summer every single week we would run out of food during the time opened on Wednesday, and until the next donation came in, we were forced to turn people away. That’s one of the worst things to do so if you think you want to help, it would be appreciated more than I can describe. You can contact me if you wish to make a food or other donation or head over to sophiescircle.com and make a monetary donation. This organization deserves all the attention it can get. For me it’s one of those, “If I become rich I’ll donate…” kind of thing.

I want so badly for the community to know about Sophie’s and take part in helping the animals have food and stay with their families. To me, animals are the most innocent creatures with no sense of wrong-doing and with only good intentions. When a family can only give their animals love, Sophie’s helps with the rest. And they throw in a little bit more love just in case.

I want so badly for the community to know about Sophie’s and take part in helping the animals have food and stay with their families. To me, animals are the most innocent creatures with no sense of wrong-doing and with only good intentions. When a family can only give their animals love, Sophie’s helps with the rest. And they throw in a little bit more love just in case.

About the Blogger

Cheyenne Drews's picture

Cheyenne Drews is a 16-year-old junior at New Smyrna Beach High School. Her favorite performer is Taylor Swift and she is a member of Troupe 1903 drama club. Her favorite quote is by Eleanor Roosevelt: "The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams." Her blog represents to her, "one teenager’s opinion, voice, and emotions put into words that I’d love for you to read." Her blog, is now called, "Place in this World." The blog (and its contents), is the sole copyright-protected intellectual property of NSB News LLC, and cannot be reproduced, copied or published in whole or in part elsewhere without the prior expressed written permission of the publisher. NSBNews.net, VolusiaNews.net and HeadlineSurfer.com are owned by NSB News LLC. All three domains fall under the umbrella of Headline Surfer, a registered trademark.

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