The South Dakota Lions Foundation supports Diabetes Awareness and Education.
The Watertown Lions Club teamed with the Knights of Columbus to purchase a Diabetic Alert Dogs (D.A.D.) for 4 year old Braeden F. A Specific Assistance application came into the Foundation asking for help. Braeden’s mom asked for help for her son who was diagnosed with Type One diabetes at the age of 3. Because of his highs/lows his parents had to be awake for him 24/7. It was getting to a point of exhaustion and a question of what to do, when they happened upon Guardian Angel Service Dogs. While at a conference to learn more about the diabetes alert dogs, a Lab came by and sat down by Braeden and started to whine. The owner of the dog informed his parents they should test his blood sugar. Mom, Brandi, was confused as she had just tested her son.
These alert dogs are trained to detect rapid fluctuations in blood sugar levels giving the individual the chance to prevent bad consequences. “D.A.D. are 100% accurate and often alert as much as 20-45 minutes before a meter shows there’s even a problem,” says Guardian Angel Service Dogs, Executive Director Sue Kindred.
The Watertown lions club said they would help and asked the Foundation what type of Specific Assistance match they could do. The Foundation said if they could come up with $2,000 they would match it 2:1. Watertown Lion Arvis R., also a Knight, took this to his Knights of Columbus club and asked them to pitch in. With the help of the Knight of Columbus they had no problem coming up with the $2,000. The Foundation matched it with $4,000.
The word then spread like fire and soon the community was forming a Benefit and Silent Auction to help raise the much needed $18,000 for the dog. 150+ companies helped sponsor the benefit and raised the funds! - Braeden was getting his dog. On April 2012 a 12-week old chocolate lab named Bella was becoming acquainted with her new home. It is Specific Assistance Grants like this one and others that really bring to mind the Lions motto, “WE SERVE”. Take the time to pay attention to the needs of your community and bring them to your Lion's Foundation.
The South Dakota Lions Foundation provides scholarships to South Dakota camps for kids with Diabetes. The camp provides a week of playing, learning and growing. The Camp provides a "safety net" of medical staff. The Foundation in partnership with Lions Clubs has sent a number of children to Diabetes Camp.