ELLSWORTH — A local mother hopes to get a trained service dog for her 11-year-old daughter, who has fetal alcohol syndrome.
Deanna Wallace Douglas calls her adoptive daughter Danyelle Wallace’s condition a “hidden disability,” one the girl has had since she was born.
“[Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders] refer to the whole range of effects that can happen to a person whose mother drank alcohol during pregnancy,” according to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
For Danyelle, symptoms include severe separation anxiety, emotional meltdowns that can last for hours, difficulty relating to other children and a tendency to wander off.
Douglas applied for a trained service dog from 4 Paws for her daughter last year and received approval in November.
It costs the organization $22,000 to train a service dog, according to Douglas, and the family is asked to raise $13,000 to help pay those bills.
The family began raising money in January, and recently received word that a man who heads another group in Ohio will give the family a grant of $6,500 when they raise the other half of the $13,000.
Douglas’s friend, Hortense Sarosi, will be hosting a fund-raiser at Denny’s in Ellsworth from 5 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, May 7, to help the family reach its $13,000 goal.