Pittsburgh Steelers' Ben Roethlisberger has awarded nine grants totaling $52,400 to police and fire departments in the Pittsburgh, Penn., area where the team plays its home games.
"We're very fortunate to be in the position that we are able to help these K-9 units," Roethlisberger said in a statement. "The work that is performed by the dogs and their handlers as well as the bond that is formed is incredible."
The law enforcement grants, which are given via the Ben Roethlisberger Foundation at the Giving Back Fund, will go to the Aspinwall Police Department, Butler County Sheriff's Office, Aliquippa Police Department, Johnstown Police Department, Masontown Police Department, Penn Hills Police Department, and the Westmoreland County Park Police.
Funds will be used to cover canine purchases, training, safety, and training equipment, food and other necessary expenses of the K-9 units.
This announcement completes the Ben Roethlisberger Foundation's fifth grant cycle, during which it distributed more than $130,000 in grants to K-9 units around the country.
Since 2007, the Ben Roethlisberger Foundation has made 98 grants totaling almost $850,000 to 94 police and fire departments and four community youth organizations, including Ronald McDonald House Charities. These 94 canine grants have funded the purchase of more than 55 dogs, the training of more than 25 dogs and 50 handlers, safety equipment for more than of 45 dogs and training equipment for more than 25 dogs as well as food, vet services and housing for countless more.