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Banner Health K9s to get donation of body armor

PHOENIX, Ariz. (May 17, 2023) – Banner Health K9s Aries, Cain, Reddy, Rico, Vulcan, Reina, Hank, Bingo, Chase, Hannah, Lea, Tyr, Fenix, Nixon, Amper, Ricky, and Mars will receive bullet- and stab-protective vests, thanks to a charitable donation from nonprofit organization Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. All the vests are sponsored by the Survival Armor incentive program and will be embroidered with the sentiment “Gifted by Vested Interest in K9s & Survival Armor.” Delivery is expected within eight to 10 week to Banner’s medical centers in Arizona and Colorado.

Vested Interest in K9s, Inc., established in 2009, is a 501(c)(3) charity whose mission is to provide bullet and stab protective vests and other assistance to dogs of law enforcement and related agencies throughout the United States. This potentially lifesaving body armor for four-legged K9 officers is U.S. made, custom fitted, and NIJ certified. Since its inception, Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. has provided over 5,077 vests to K9s in all 50 states at a value of $6.9 million, made possible by both private and corporate donations.

“We are so grateful to Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. for this generous donation to protect our valued K9s,” says Elizabeth Kempshall, executive director of security for Banner Health. “Each and every day, our K9s help ensure the safety of our patients, protect their human handlers, and pay visits to patients to brighten their days. Knowing they’re protected from any potential harm and can protect our staff and patients in case of an emergency makes their job and our jobs easier.”

The program is open to U.S. dogs that are at least 20 months old and actively employed and certified with law enforcement or related agencies. K9s with expired vests are also eligible to participate. There are an estimated 30,000 law enforcement K9s throughout the United States.

Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. accepts tax-deductible contributions in any amount, while a single donation of $985 will sponsor one vest. Each vest has a value of $1800.00, weighs an average of 4-5 lb., and comes with a five-year warranty. For more information, or to learn about volunteer opportunities, please call 508-824-6978. Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. provides information, lists events, and accepts donations at, or you may mail your contribution to P.O. Box 9, East Taunton, MA 02718.   

Established in 2001, the Banner Health Foundation engages the community and stewards charitable gifts to advance Banner Health’s nonprofit mission of making health care easier so life can be better. Contributions are invested locally to support patient care programs and services operated by Banner’s many hospitals and health care facilities in Arizona and Wyoming. For more information, please visit




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