When Bonnie learned that her new job required her to travel locally she was terrified about riding the bus. While using public transit is intimidating for many, for Bonnie, who has cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair, the thought was overwhelming.
“I literally cried just thinking about what I was going to have to do. I had so many fears about not getting off at the right stop or even if the bus would stop. And I’m terrible with directions.”
Bonnie enrolled in Via’s travel training program and began working with a trainer to learn to safely, comfortably and competently use the bus system.
With the trainer’s assistance, she practiced taking bus routes to multiple destinations, including from her home in Boulder to work in Thornton.
“We did the routes over and over again because that’s what I needed before I felt confident that I could do it by myself,” she said.
Bonnie credits the travel training program with not just giving her the skills she needed to ride the bus but also the confidence to overcome what previously seemed like insurmountable barriers – inaccessible bus stops, missed buses, and figuring out new destinations.
“The travel training program has opened so many doors for me. Now I know that if the bus goes there, I can go there.”