Bath non-profit forms to fight cancer

Hot Springs, Va. – A new non profit is being formed in Bath County to help those with cancer pay for expenses related to the illness.

Becky Armstrong is the Secretary of the Doris Via Cancer Fund.

“This cancer fund is possible because of a generous woman leaving her estate to the care of cancer patients in Bath County,” said Armstrong. “Her name is Doris Via. And many of us remember her. I remember her as a child being my dental hygienist. So it’s kind of special to me to fulfill the wishes of Mrs. Via, what she wanted done with this estate money. But she didn’t leave a lot of specific instructions. So we have formed the Doris Via Cancer Fund to really provide and disperse the money according to her wishes. And that’s kind of broad, so what we do is take requests and help people financially how we can.”

Lori Batten is the President of the Doris Via Fund.

“The money that we provide to the cancer patients and their families can be used for travel, food, lodging, some help with medications, nutritional supplements, medical supplies, preventive care, assistance to those who are needing screening tests and what other needs that we can determine as a board that they may need,” said Batten.

Terry Kershner is one of the board members for the Doris Via Cancer Fund.
“We really felt like we’d be able to give the money away pretty easily and that would be the end of it,” said Kershner. “But it’s been pretty remarkable, as we give money away more money comes in. People make donations. And so we realized that this really is something that can benefit the county and be an ongoing thing, because people realize that there are great financial needs when you’re suffering from cancer. So money continues to come in and so we haven’t been able to give it all away and that’s been a real blessing. And that’s the reason that we decided to form the non-profit organization, because we feel like it can be an ongoing thing for the community.”

Janice Webb is the fund’s Treasurer.

“In 2011 we were able to help, you know, just word of mouth, we helped twelve individuals,” said Webb. “And most of this went for their transportation needs to and from their treatments. And the total in 2011 was $8,171.57. Now so far this year we’ve helped thirteen people with a total of approximately $4,800.”

Trudy Woodzell is the Vice Chairman of the fund.

“Donations can be received at PO Box 174, Hot Springs, Virginia or also by seeing a member of the board which is Lori Batten, myself, Janice Webb, Becky Armstrong or Terry Kershner,” said Woodzell. “The Doris Via Fund has also agreed to be a sponsor for this year’s Relay for Life which will be held August 18th here at Bath County High School. There will be a tent set up that will give you some information about the cancer fund and also information that you may need about where you can go for treatments.”

The Doris Via Cancer Fund is a separate organization from the American Cancer Society. All requests are confidential and help is provided very quickly, often times the same day as the request. The fund also provides help with preventive measures, including helping people quit smoking. For more information contact Lori Batten at Bath Community Hospital at 540-839-7188.

Story By

Heather Niday

Heather is our Program Director and Traffic Manager. She started with Allegheny Mountain Radio as a volunteer deejay. She then joined the AMR staff in February of 2007. Heather grew up in the Richmond, Virginia, area and now lives in Arbovale, West Virginia with her husband Chuck. Heather is a wonderful flute player, and choir director for Arbovale UMC. You can hear Heather along with Chuck on Tuesday nights from 6 to 8pm as they host two hours of jazz on Something Different.

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