Program helping women recover from substance abuse gets $50,000 boost from Catholic church

CLOVIS, Calif. (KFSN) -- Every Friday it's a packed house at the Institute of Technologies industrial kitchen, women working hard and together to hand-make thousands of dog treats for their business "Dog's Dig Em' All Natural Treats."

"We make about 100 per tray," said one employee.

To anyone, they are just biscuits, but for the women who are rolling, cutting and baking them, they are much more.

"Our organization is based on a mission to help women in recovery from drugs and alcohol to give them a second chance and to lift their spirits and to give them hope and faith," said Sandra Kaye Saint Francis Project CEO.

Dog's Dig Em' All is part of the Saint Francis Homeless Project; they fight homelessness, poverty and give women with troubled pasts a second chance. Since it was created in 2010 it has helped countless women. Katy McCoy used to be in a gang and served jail time after committing financial crimes. She said Saint Francis turned her life around.

"I have been off probation, I have all my kids back, I met an amazing man, got married, bought a house and living my best life right now," she said.

This baking day was a little more special, Bishop Joseph Brennan with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Fresno is visiting. He even tried one of the dog treats not knowing they are for mans best friend.

"They tasted fine, I think it's helping with my fleas," he said.

He did not come empty-handed, Brennan presented the program with a $50,000 check from the Catholic Campaign of Human Development.

"It is helping them get their lives back on track, giving them some skills, this is absolutely a wonderful place," he said.

Now they will be able to help even more women get back on their feet. Through the new funding, they will be able to have another kitchen, pay better wages and possibly get a van for deliveries.
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