PHOENIX (FOX 10) - A Valley Girl Scout is earning her Gold Award one bag of dog food at a time. And Jacey's Gold Project has grown to something no one could have imagined.
Katherine Kouvelas-Edick started running The Arias Foundation three years ago. It wasn't until recently that 15-year-old Jacey Salisbury started volunteering.
"She was looking for a project and she wasn't quite sure what she wanted to do," said Kouvelas-Edick. "She knew she wanted to do something with the homeless."
"I saw that the humans are being taken care of with their hygiene packs and their snack packs," Salisbury said. "Just things like that, I wanted to help the animals."
Salisbury started focusing her efforts on the pets that belong to the homeless people the foundation assists. Mostly dogs that she says also need comfort, care, and a little extra love.
Salisbury then started collecting bags of dog food, accepting donations from places like True Home Maintenance Air Conditioning & Heating.
"She came in and presented to us about her project," said True Home Maintenance Air Conditioning & Heating. "And I came home and I said, 'How can we help? How can we make this work?' so he came up with that we're doing to the spring. You're calling us to schedule tune-ups [and] instead of paying us cash if you donate 35 pounds plus of dog food, and that's going to be your form of payment."
Katherine says thanks to Jacey, hundreds of pets have received food and Jacey says she doesn't plan to stop any time soon.
"These are like their kids out here," Kouvelas-Edick said. "So to be able to give them that develops a connection and they trust us because we take care of their kids and it's been amazing."
Kouvelas-Edick went on to say that they won't go into housing because their animals aren't vaccinated, and housing "won't allow them to go." So, she's trying to bring in a vet to help with the vaccinations.
Salisbury is currently looking for some vets to volunteer and help administer the vaccinations.