Tugs for Tots raises thousands for children in the Roanoke Valley

Melissa Gaona/WDBJ7
Melissa Gaona/WDBJ7(WDBJ)
Published: May. 5, 2017 at 6:39 PM EDT
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In 2016, CHIP served 997 children and 708 families. Eighty moms received pre-natal care, 25 families received counseling, 160 children had their asthma case managed and 285 children dental varnish.

If you ask Cynthia Fountain, she would tell you she has the best job in the world. She's a grandma to four grandchildren. But Fountain also has full custody of her four grandchildren and plays the role of their mother and father.

"My grandchildren got taken away from their parents because of domestic violence and drugs," Fountain cried.

All of the kids, including twins, are under the age of 11. Saying Fountain has her hands full is an understatement.

"Trying to handle all of them at one time at the doctor’s office is tough but that's where chip comes in. They give me transportation to the doctor,” Cynthia said.

Developmental Director Nina Zanella with CHIP says the program helps kids with health education and literacy, physical and oral health, asthma care, prenatal care, mental health, family self-sufficiency, school readiness and transportation.

One of CHIP's biggest fundraisers is Tugs for Tots and 17 businesses in the Roanoke Valley signed up for the event on Friday. Over the years, the Tugs for Tots event has raised more than $400,000.