Canine Companions Honors GFWC International President Marian St.Clair

September 16, 2021

GFWC Affiliate Organization Canine Companions announced the birth of Sims, a female yellow Labrador named in honor of GFWC International President Marian Simmons-St.Clair. With the goal of becoming a highly trained service dog for a person with a disability, Sims is being raised by a long-time puppy raiser and Canine Companions supporter located in Virginia, with a second home in Washington D.C.– close enough for some visits to GFWC Headquarters. Her puppy raiser is tasked with teaching this adorable puppy basic obedience and socialization, while also giving her love and play time.

In addition to learning more than 30 obedience commands, Sims will learn to lay quietly in public places, ignore food and other distractions in the environment, and gain real-world experience with novel sights and sounds. After 18 months with her volunteer puppy raiser, Sims will return to Canine Companions for professional training in advanced commands such as picking up dropped items, turning on lights, and pulling a manual wheelchair. She will then hopefully graduate as a service dog and enhance the independence of a person with disabilities.

Puppies like Sims are on a very important journey to become a life-changing service dog for a person with a disability. Canine Companions service dogs are matched at no cost to recipients—adults, children, and veterans with disabilities—after an intensive two-week training class culminating in a joyous graduation ceremony that is open to the public.

To learn more about Canine Companions, visit


December 21

Volunteers in Action: GFWC West Side and GFWC New Jersey

Read the Blog

Success For Survivors Scholarship

Each year, GFWC awards scholarships to help intimate partner abuse survivors obtain a post-secondary education that offers a chance to reshape their future by securing employment and gaining personal independence.

Learn More