Born premature, Erin Baur (pictured, left) has learning, hearing and speech disabilities. She also has a passion for dogs.

The Ohio middle schooler learned that Chief Powalie of the Painesville Police Department would like a new K9 because his current dog, “Cash”, will be retiring soon. She thought it would be a good idea as a community service to raise funds for a new dog and started back in July by setting a goal of $11,000 — enough for the K-9, vet care, and a $1,000 bullet proof vest.

“I almost fell out of my chair when I found out,” Chief Powalie told the News-Herald in Willoughby. “One day I was talking to someone and the next I’m getting a phone call asking if they can put on a fundraiser — all unbeknownst to me.”

The 14-year-old has worked hard to set up a partnership with a tax deductible police fund and collecting donations at community events, like an upcoming dog walk festival on September 28th in Painesville’s Kiwanis Park.

In return for her community service, Erin will be allowed to name the new K-9 Officer. She has decided on the name “Gold.” Visit her “Go for the Gold” page here.

“She is a little one trying to make a difference and this is what we want from our next generation,” said the girl’s aunt, Marge Henning. “So let’s encourage her by donating to her campaign.”

(READ more from the News-Herald)