This Valentine’s Day, Via Mobility Services, is honoring the 35 drivers and staff (call center operators, dispatchers, supervisors, managers, and directors) who went above and beyond their usual duties to help nearly 100 people escape the Marshall Fire. (To read more about Via’s rescue efforts, click this link.)
Via is a private, 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Via is not a government agency.
But we do serve as a second responder when there’s a disaster. This means we offer our resources—buses, drivers, staff, dispatching and communications capabilities, and sometimes even our headquarters—to first responders. As a second responder, one of the main things we do is use our buses to move people quickly from a disaster area. Then in the following days, we drive people from shelters to temporary housing and resource centers and sometimes we move supplies to places where they’re needed, such as taking food to first responders.
In addition to responding to the Marshall Fire, in recent years Via helped move people during the wildfires in the mountains and flooding in Boulder County. We also took hundreds of people who don’t drive to and from temporary Covid-19 vaccination clinics. And in the aftermath of the mass shooting at the Table Mesa King Soopers, Via let law enforcement and counselors set up a Family Assistance Center in its Boulder facility.
Via is not paid for our role as a second responder. It is something we do as a community transit agency responding to the needs of the communities we serve.
Via’s founding mission is to provide paratransit services to people with limited mobility. Our paratransit consists of driver-assisted, door-through-door transportation in wheelchair-accessible vehicles. Via gives people the freedom to connect with the community and the resources they need.
For several years, Via has not been charging fares for its paratransit trips. We are trying to keep all paratransit rides fare-free because so many of our clients live on low incomes. We receive government and foundation grants to pay for a portion of the paratransit trips we provide, but that still leaves a gap in covering the costs. We rely on donations from individuals and corporations to cover that gap and keep the service free for riders.
We are grateful for every contribution we receive. If you can afford it, please contribute to Via this Valentine’s Day. When you give, you’re supporting the freedom to connect and honoring Via’s heroes.
Via Mobility Services is a 501(c)(3) non-profit. Donations are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law. No rider is ever required to donate, and no one is denied service for not donating.