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Local restaurant helping to raise money for baby mauled by dog last month

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POCATELLO (KPVI) – A local baby has spent weeks in a Utah hospital recovering after being mauled by a dog last month. Since then, the community has rallied around the girl’s family in support. A local restaurant is helping raise money for the girl’s medical expenses.

“I would say they’re probably two of the nicest people you’d ever want to meet,” says Chris Arvas of the girl’s parents Ricki Fielder and Hasan AlQattan.

Arvas met the couple a few years ago and says he’s always been impressed with how kind the pair is. He is the owner of Uncle Jim’s Restaurant in Pocatello and the staff is raising money for the couple.

“They’re going to need a lot of help,” Arvas says. “They’re going to be looking at a lot of surgeries, a lot of personal expense, a lot of time of work, etcetera. So, anything we can do to help them is a good thing.”

In mid-October, the couple’s one-year-old daughter Anita was mauled by a neighbor’s dog. Anita’s had multiple surgeries already.

RELATED | Local baby attacked by dog is slowly recovering, community rallying to help the family

The baby girl is doing a little better now, but her parents say she’ll have many more surgeries in the coming years.

A GoFundMe account has been set up in her name and has raised over $14,000 with a goal of $100,000.

A benefit golf scramble at Highland Golf Course raised over $11,000 last weekend.

Customers at Uncle Jim’s have donated more than $600 to go towards Anita’s medical bills.

“You know, customers have been pretty generous,” Avas adds. “As a matter of fact, one put at least $100 in there because there was a $100 bill in the jar.”

Uncle Jim’s Restaurant initially hoped to raise $500 for Anita and accomplished the goal in less than two weeks. They’ve now bumped that goal up to $1,000.

The jar at the restaurant will stay on the counter and continue to collect for the family. When the jar is full, they will take the money to Idaho Central Credit Union where an account has been set up in the family’s name.

Uncle Jim’s Restaurant is at 1011 Pocatello Avenue in Pocatello. You can drop off a donation for Anita between 7 a.m. and 3 p.m. any day of the week.

You can also ask ICCU about the donation account set up in the family’s name or donate directly to the GoFundMe account by clicking here.

Our attorneys tell us we need to put this disclaimer in stories involving fundraisers: does not assure that the money deposited to the account will be applied for the benefit of the persons named as beneficiaries.