Manlius (WSYR-TV) - A teenager in Manlius is living with Tourette Syndrome, and her family is hoping you can help.
Friends of the family are trying to raise funds to help 15-year-old Emily Jones. They’re hoping a service dog can help their daughter.
For Jones, simply going to school can be a struggle.
"It's not easy to get through the day because I don't like to let my tics out in front of people because I'm embarrassed and I'm afraid people are going to make fun of me,” she said.
Jones says she often keeps the tic attacks bottled up until she gets home – where they are sometimes violently released.
Jones was diagnosed with the condition when she was 6 years old and it has affected nearly every aspect of her life.
Her mother, Monica Jones, said, "She loves art and we try to go to the museum and she can't do it because there were too many people and her tics were really bad and people were staring and we couldn't, you know, she couldn't do what she wanted to do, and you know, that was horrible."
According to her mother, help is out there. And it’s in the form of a service dog named “Casey.” The family hopes such a pup will help calm the anxiety that often keeps her at home.
But Casey is currently in Seattle, and with training, costs $32,000.
The family is trying to raise money to bring the dog to Central New York.
A group of young professionals called Valued Industry Partners will hold a benefit on April 24 at 6 p.m. at the Palace Theater on James Street in Syracuse.
Donations can be made online at GoFundMe.com
For more information on the Jones’ condition, visit the website for the national Tourette Syndrome Association