Via promotes independence and self-sufficiency for people with limited mobility by providing caring, customer-focused transportation options.
- All people are entitled to live as independently as possible within their life circumstances.
- Freedom of movement is a basic human need in our society.
- Everybody counts, regardless of age, health, disability, income, or ethnicity, and has a contribution to make to the community in which they live.
For over 40 years, Via has been providing accessible and affordable transportation for individuals with limited mobility, primarily older adults and people with disabilities. In 1979, the Boulder County Commissioners office helped start Via with a founding grant. Since then, Via's team has been driving young adults to jobs that fill them with pride; and taking older adults to medical appointments, grocery stores, and volunteer opportunities. When a person has an accident or surgery, Via drivers help them get to work during their recovery period. Via supports independence and self-sufficiency by giving those we serve over 100,000 rides a year.
Since our founding, Via has grown to an organization with a fleet of nearly 200 vehicles. We've also expanded our programming to include travel training, providing mobility options information, and referrals. Our travel training program is nationally recognized as a model for other agencies. Before the pandemic, Via's volunteer drivers were giving ambulatory clients about 500 rides a month.
Via is currently the only private, nonprofit paratransit provider in Boulder County. On July 1, 2020, Via assumed the services in that Seniors' Resource Center had been providing in the Denver metro region. Via supports its human services transportation with federal, state, and local grant funding. But that still leaves a gap in covering the cost of providing demand responsive, door-to-door services to those with mobility limitations. We cover that gap with philanthropic giving. Because we keep our overhead low, about 85% of all donations to Via goes directly to program costs.
Now we're looking to the future. With the aging of Baby Boomers, there is an increasing number of people experiencing mobility limitations. To expand our capacity to meet increasing needs, Via's team is examining new ways of providing core services while honoring our commitment to environmentally sustainable operations. We have begun the long-term process of converting Via's fleet to electric vehicles that are powered by renewable energy. This project includes expanding our array of solar panels and battery storage system. In the future, Via will explore how autonomous vehicles can be incorporated with our services without sacrificing the caring, personal service that is Via's hallmark.
By adopting innovations and forming strategic partnerships with local governments, for-profit technology businesses, and research organizations, Via is ready to meet the next forty years of serving those with mobility limitations.
"Via gives me freedom. Via means so much to me--more than I can say. I thought I would be so embarrassed about being strapped in a van and having to get around in such a vulnerable way. Instead, what I found is the freedom it gives me." - Debbie N., Via Rider
"Last month, my mother lost her hearing aid on the AM bus. She has dementia and didn't realize it and was at daycare all day. That afternoon, Via took her to her hairdresser. In the meantime, the driver found the hearing aid on her bus and realized who it belonged to. She brought it personally to my mom at the hairdresser so she would have it for the weekend! Mom's hearing aid would have been very hard to replace as they are expensive and she is on very limited funds. It is caring, attentive, and ethical people that make your service so much more than "a ride." Thank you so much!" - Anonymous Child of a Via Rider
"I needed help from Via and I got it, but I've still felt independent. Every single person at Via cares about my well-being. I feel safe. I feel cared for. And I couldn't live the life I live without Via." - Kati P., Via Rider