Cori Williams

Cori Williams changed the idea of giving gifts for her 10 birthday by asking for donations instead.

Williams — who turned 10 years old last Sunday — asked her friends to make a donation to the Collin County Humane Society at the Rockwall Animal Adoption Center. The adoption center provided Williams and her family with a wish list and Williams’ friends donated dog and cat food, cat litter, blankets and toys for the animals. Williams said her friends enjoy donating gifts for the animals — almost more than giving her gifts.

“My friends are so generous. They always buy me presents along with the donations,” Williams said. “I thought my friends liked getting the presents for the dogs and cats better than getting stuff for me because they brought in a lot of donations.”

Her father — Chuck Williams — said the parents have been very receptive to the idea, as well — both times Cori has asked for donation instead of gifts.

Cori asked for donations instead of presents for the first time for her birthday last year. She couldn’t think of anything she wanted for her birthday, but thought the animals at the shelter might need something so she decided to ask for donations on their behalf.

“I thought I had everything I wanted and that these dogs and cats needed something.”

Cori chose the animal shelter for a specific reason — she loves animals. She has a hamster named Jack, a cat named Tigger and two dogs — a Great Dane named Hamlet and a Mastiff named Thaddeus. Cori also rides horses every week and hopes to own a horse one day. When she grows up, Cori wants to open a veterinarian clinic.

“She already has her whole future planned out,” Chuck said.

In addition to the vet clinic, Cori said she wants to live on a ranch with horses and other pets. Right now, Cori plays with her animals whenever she can. She trains her dogs when she is bored at home and she even has her cat leash-trained.

“She’s always doing something with animals,” Chuck said.

Cori’s animal interactions aren’t limited to her own animals or her birthday donations. Last summer she went to Critter Camp where she helped handle, play and learn about animals and she recently babysat two dogs. The dogs weren’t leash trained, so Cori tried to train one how to walk on a leash while she cared for it.

Cori plans to ask for donations to the adoption center for her birthday again next year to continue helping the animals of Rockwall.

For more information about the CCHS at Rockwall Adoption Center, visit

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