RICHMOND, VA — As a Family Educator for CHIP of New River Valley, Tamara Slife helps improve the health of children in need while also supporting the families’ ability to move toward self-sufficiency. She was recently honored for her outstanding and dedicated work with the 2019 Expanding Horizons Award, which recognizes the incredible work in communities throughout the Commonwealth to support expectant parents, young children and families through voluntary home visiting programs.

Slife and her colleagues at CHIP of New River Valley assist low-income families and pregnant women with children through age 6 with access to medical and dental services. Slife also links them to other human service organizations in the New River Valley, as she did when she helped one mother find volunteer work that helped develop her work experience and then led to paying employment. In her recommendation for Tamara, Kari Thomas Kovick, Director of Heart of the Child Music Education, highlighted that “Tamara’s goal is always to provide better resources while building on existing strengths,” and that her “kindness and open heartedness cannot be matched.”

The 2019 Expanding Horizons Awards nominees hailed from all areas of the Commonwealth and provide services to a diverse demographic, through numerous programs and services. Laurel Aparicio, Director of Early Impact Virginia, said, “We see incredible home visiting work across the Commonwealth, so we knew that deciding on an honoree would be a difficult challenge. It’s clear that Tamara Slife has a sincere and deep commitment to helping families raise healthy children through educations and skill sharing. Families served by CHIP of New River Valley have a special resource in Tamara.”

Early Impact Virginia is the alliance for family education and support in the home. EIV provides valuable skills to deliver high quality services to improve the health, social and educational outcomes for new and expecting parents, young children and their families in 120 communities across the Commonwealth. To learn more about voluntary home visiting and how it helps Virginia families break the cycles of child abuse, neglect and poverty, visit https://earlyimpactva.org/.

Children’s Health Improvement Partnership (CHIP) of New River Valley is a program of New River Community Action (NRCA). New River Community Action is a non-profit agency working with community groups in the New River Valley to address local conditions of poverty. NRCA assists low-income individuals during financial crises with food and shelter, help ex-offenders transition successfully back into society, and provide counseling to improve financial literacy. NRCA also supports low-income families with young children through Head Start, parent education, and CHIP home visiting services that improve family health and self-sufficiency. NRCA serves over 10,000 New River Valley residents each year. For more information about NRCA, visit www.newrivercommunityaction.org.

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