The Friends of the Stokes Shelter broke ground for the new adoption center after raising half the funds needed to start building, according to the non-profit organization.

The property is located on Dodgetown Rd., just north of the old prison camp in the Meadows community.

The group is still working to raise another $200,000 and will rely on donations from Stokes County citizens. Donations are tax deductible and can be made through

Architect Perry Peterson is working on the project pro bono and Mike East, with East Landscaping, along with Randy Griffin are taking the next steps to make the center a reality.

“Members of FOSS want to thank everyone for this first step, but remind all the citizens that it will take their help to finish this project and keep it going for future generations,” said Dr. Debbie Cowan, a local veterinarian and leader in the Friends group.

Julie Ettenborrough, a colleague of Cowan’s for 18 years at the Animal Hospital of Walnut Cove, left a $10,000 posthumous donation in her will to benefit the adoption center.

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