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Beyond the Ride: How Via Empowers Dave To Go To Work and Beyond

In the heart of Longmont, Colorado, lives Dave, a resilient and spirited individual with a learning disability who has carved out a life of independence and community involvement with a little help from Via Mobility Services.

Dave resides in his own apartment, sharing his space with his beloved cat, Buster. His journey with Via began through the encouragement and assistance of his grandmother, who supported him in signing up to ride with Via Paratransit. Via is an important part of Dave’s weekly routine of commuting to and from his part-time job at the Super Target in Longmont, where he takes pride in sweeping the stock room. In April, Dave celebrates his 25th work anniversary and hopes to take on more responsibilities like stocking the shelves with video games.

Beyond work, Dave’s life is rich with activities and connections. From his love for watching cartoons like Thundercats with friends to his aspirations of taking on the Burrito Challenge at Aunt Alice’s Diner, Dave’s zest for life is palpable. He is an active participant in Elevated Supports, a Program Approved Service Agency (PASA) serving individuals who receive waiver support through Imagine!. Dave goes on outings with Elevated Supports to places like The Legion for meals and dreams of going on their exotic cruises.

“The bus is a good place to meet new friends,” says Dave. One of the highlights of riding with Via is meeting new people and making friends on the bus. 

A strong community and support systems go a long way in enriching the lives of our riders. Dave’s social calendar is bustling, whether it’s a trip to the Grizzly Rose in Denver to enjoy pizza and watch people dancing. Once a week, he visits his mother, who lives in an assisted living facility. With the help of several great groups, Dave maintains his social connections and lives a life full of the experiences that matter most to him.

Dave also shared some challenges, particularly with long wait times when scheduling rides over the phone. Fortunately, the introduction of the Via Colorado app has transformed his experience, allowing him to conveniently schedule his rides up to a week in advance, eliminating wait times and enhancing his overall satisfaction with our services. Increased support from our donors, grantors, and groups who hire Via to operate a one-time or ongoing shuttle service help Via provide more services for people with disabilities.

Dave’s adventures aren’t limited to local trips. His solo journey to Minnesota for a friend’s graduation led to an incredible experience discovering and adventuring around the Mall of America. With his family, he traveled to Las Vegas for a family wedding and won $5 at a slot machine! Dave’s experiences with supporters in his community help facilitate the confidence and skills Dave gained through the regular use of accessible transportation.

Accessible transportation profoundly affects the independence and joy of the more than 3,500 people we serve every year. Dave’s story and the experiences of all our riders inspire us every day to continue our work, ensuring accessible transportation remains a reliable, empowering force in their lives. By connecting Via riders to essential services, social gatherings, and opportunities to work and volunteer, we’re creating a community where everyone belongs.

A monthly donation of $20 covers a round trip for commuters like Dave. Join the Access Allies group of monthly donors who are our partners in investing in the well-being of our community. Access Allies help by reducing social isolation and increasing participation in our local economy. Or click here to make a one-time donation now.

Click here to read more about other Via riders.

Via can help riders commute to work in all its service areas, including Boulder. Our partner, Boulder Chamber Transportation Connections, helps commuters create efficient and sustainable transportation plans.

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Starting July 1, the Mountain Rides shuttle will be available on Mondays, in addition to Wednesdays and Thursdays.
Starting July 1, the Mountain Rides shuttle will be available on Mondays, in addition to Wednesdays and Thursdays.