HOULTON, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- A girl in Houlton decided to use her birthday party to help those who can't help themselves.
Presents weren't as important to Amelia Knapp as saving dogs and cats in the Virgin Islands. After seeing the devastation caused by Hurricane Irma and Maria, she decided to use her 12th birthday party to help the Animal Care Center of St John. Guests were asked to bring money and Amazon gift cards to send to the animal shelter instead of presents for Knapp.
"I've just always liked them," said Knapp about animals. "I've always been around animals, but I'm not allowed to have a dog."
An act of selflessness during a 12th birthday is a true sign of maturity. Knapp's parents decided to reward her with a birthday surprise. Her mom, Billi Ann Knapp, placed something covered in a white sheet in front of her daughter during the party. It's unveiling caused shock and for good reason, because underneath was a crate with a yellow lab puppy inside. The gift brought tears to the eyes of its new 12-year-old owner.
"I thought there would be tears," said Billi Ann."Yeah I think this was a good night."
Knapp decided to name her new puppy August, Auggie for short. Her birthday party raised $235 in cash and $95 in Amazon gift cards for the Animal Care Center of St John. The gift cards were used to purchase 30 lbs. of dog food, 36 lbs. of cat food and 80 lbs. of kitty litter.