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2017 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Animal Welfare Friends

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Volunteering Oportunities

Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animal Protection & Welfare, Animals

Mission: Our mission is to rescue and care for animals in need while educating the humans on whom these animals rely to bring them a peaceful, safe and healthy life.

Target demographics: homeless animals

Geographic areas served: Jones County, IA

Programs: adopting dogs and cats out to forever homes.

Community Stories

11 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters


Rating: 5

I have known about the Animal Welfare Friends for sometime but hadn't visited until our sweet Dodger passed in September this year. We took some of her things out to share with the shelter. What a wonderful place. I also volunteered to take photos for their calendar this year which was so much fun. This place was very clean and many animal loving volunteers/ employees of the shelter.
Thank you Friends for what you do for the community.


Rating: 5

I volunteer at AWF and I love it! Everything is always so well taken care of and clean. They truly only want the best for their animals and will do anything to find great homes for them all. Everyone works together, volunteers, staff, and community all come together and make this shelter so special and full of love.

Erin D.2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have followed AWF happenings since their start - back when there was no shelter and relied only on fosters to give adoptable pets homes. We adopted our sweet border collie from AWF in 2006. I have nothing but good to say about this wonderful organization.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I am a board member, long-time volunteer, and repeat "foster failure". I am so proud and grateful that after ten long years of hard work we finally made our dream come true- an animal shelter in Jones County. We love the animals who come to us for help in finding their forever homes. We get to know them as individuals and each one is precious. It's always a bittersweet moment when one of our furry friends "goes home". We take pride in making our shelter a clean, happy place. Most of our cats live in free-roaming rooms where they can sunbathe in the big picture windows or play with each other. Thanks to a very generous donor the dogs can run to their hearts' content in a fenced-in grassy play area part of the day. Come visit us- we'll be happy to see you!

Jane Knoll H.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Our 1st adoption from Animal Welfare Friends was Sept. 15, 2003. Duke was a wonderful dog who loved everyone. We lost Duke in Dec. 2016, He was able to attend the open house of the shelter.
We fostered many dogs for Animal Welfare Friends and had 4 foster failures that lived out their lives with us. Our last foster failure will be 11 years old this January. DJ was found tied to a tree the end of June with no food or water. He was 6 months old. DJ has a perfect personality.
Animal Welfare Foundation is a great service to Jones County. Many pets have found loving homes through AWF.


Rating: 5

My son kept asking me to stop in at the cat shelter when they were located in Olin. I put him off because it breaks my heart when I see cats caged up. He would not let it go so I caved and stopped.
I was quite surprised when entering the cat room that they were free roaming! It was a tremendous relief to me. This organization definitely does its best to have the animals best interests at heart. The consistent hard work and dedication of caring for the animals coming through the shelter on their journey to their final home is literally blood, sweat and tears. Members and volunteers alike devote their homes as foster homes when needed and spend numerous hours to ensure proper care and time is spent with the animals.
I signed up that first day to be a volunteer. I feel truly blessed to be a part of this organization and experience.

Caspien Z.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I adopted my cat from AWF and he's the best thing to ever happen to me.

1 Kerrie R.


Rating: 5

The AWF has done so much for the community for years, but now that they have a permanent shelter, they are able to work on a much bigger scale! From transferring pets from overfull, out of state shelters, to working with local police departments on strays, they've come so far this past year.

I started volunteering a few months ago, and am getting to know all of these warm hearted people who do what they do soley because they want to help animals. I can't wait to be in the position to foster animals myself! They're also teaching volunteers to do MORE - signs of illness to look for, proper cross contamination practices, etc.

This is a place where volunteers cry happy tears when animals are adopted, then dig back in and find the next animal to start helping. I'm so glad to have them in Jones County!



Rating: 5

I have volunteered with AWF for several years and it has been a fantastic experience. They are helpful and willing to share their knowledge and my girls and I learned so much about raising bottle fed kittens. My children now volunteer for them and one of them has gone onto being an employee. She LOVES her job!!!! I have also adopted animals through them and so has my Dad. They go out of their way to make sure the animal you adopt is the right animal for you and your family. I would suggest AWF be your first stop if you are looking for a pet or if you really want to make a difference by volunteering!


Client Served

Rating: 5

Adopted our cat here! A great facility and friendly volunteers made this a memorable experience for our family.



Rating: 4

I’ve been a volunteer with Animal Welfare Foundation of Iowa for 9 years. In addition, to being a volunteer, I was also a board member for several years. During that time, the financial information provided was not very specific and how it was reported made one question how well the financials were being handled.

During my time on the board, a change in officers took place. A few members that were involved from the organization’s inception stepped down. After this occurred, an audit was conducted on the past two years financials. The new board members were saddened and upset about what was found. Personally, I was always proud to be a volunteer for this organization, but after learning the findings of the audit I was sickened and felt betrayed. I really trusted and admired the previous leaders. In addition, all of us true hardily believe this organization really did put 100% of the money raised towards AWFs pets it rescued.

In the end, the shakeup in officers has truly turned this organization around for the better. The organization now has a Board of Directors who performs random audits and the financials are taken care of in a professional manner. They also have a professional bookkeeper and a chain of command which prevents shady spending, lost records, etc. This has in turn, created a more trusting organization. One you can count that when they say 100% of the money raised goes only towards the animals, it goes for only Animal Welfare Foundation of Iowa’s animals it rescues and not for someone else’s personal gain or to take care of their irresponsibly large group of personal pets. This is a good organization who is working to better their community and change things for the better. I have no doubt when I donate money now that I’m really donating to the animals they are saving. Animal Welfare Foundation of Iowa is now truly a GREAT NONPROFIT!

Review from Guidestar