Top 10 Reasons to Run

10 Reasons to Participate

We all want the same things from life; a great job in a great community and plenty of friends with whom we share the experience. For people with disabilities, these life goals can be challenging. Via works every day to help people achieve this reality.

For more than 66 years, the dedicated and committed care providers at Via work to help children overcome developmental delays, help young adults find meaningful and sustainable jobs and provide the resources and opportunities so people with disabilities may lead activity and enjoyable lives right in their own community. Learn more about Via’s programs.

  1. Because it feels good knowing you can make a difference.
  2. Help provide a real pay check and a job in our community and change the life of an individual with a disability.
  3. Share the success of a young man achieving his goals of furthering his education beyond high school and pursuing his dreams of a career.
  4. Running for Via makes you part of something greater than yourself.
  5. Children in childcare centers across the Lehigh Valley will understand better than their parents that a child with a disability is a friend, just like all their friends.
  6. Race for those who cannot.
  7. Help a man who has lived with his aging parents, suddenly and wonderfully find a place to live in the community and friends to share his life.
  8. Bring hope to a mother whose son has been diagnosed with a disability when she hears what Via Early Intervention services can provide for her and her son.
  9. Help build a stronger community, a community that provides opportunities for children and adults of all ability levels, a community that provides resources to help people live, work and connect in their neighborhoods, and a community that embraces all of its members.
  10. Government funding accounts for only 60% of the dollars needed to support Via’s services.  Your participation impacts adults and children with disabilities.

How to get involved

Slide Slide Sponsors
2021 St. Luke’s Via Marathon Will Not Take Place

March 22, 2022 (BETHLEHEM, PA) – Via announced today that the 2021 St. Luke’s Via Marathon will not take place this fall due to the uncertainty surrounding the possibility of safely holding a large event that takes more than a year of planning and significant resources to execute.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has led us to take make difficult decisions important in allowing us to continue to fulfill our mission of helping people with developmental and intellectual disabilities reach their full potential within new financial and safety constraints,” said Lisa Walkiewicz, President and CEO of Via of the Lehigh Valley.

“Over the last 12 months, we have worked diligently to ensure that the essential services Via provides for individuals with disabilities and their families remain in place.  It is vital that Via concentrates on its core mission and focus on continuing to support the most vulnerable members of our community.”

“The planning for the St. Luke’s Via Marathon is a year-long endeavor.  With the uncertainty of the past year, we simply could not dedicate our limited resources to planning an event that could be canceled by factors outside of our control at any time.  Therefore, we have made the difficult decision not to hold the St. Luke’s Via Marathon this year.”

“We understand why the St. Luke’s Via Marathon cannot take place this year,” said Ken Szydlow, Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of St. Luke’s University Health Network.  “We are proud to partner with Via of the Lehigh Valley to ensure that people with developmental and intellectual disabilities live fulfilling lives as vital members of our community.  We will continue to support this mission and hope other sponsors of the Marathon join us.”

“We are so thankful to all of our community partners who have stepped up to directly fund our services during this crisis,” Walkiewicz said. “This financial support has helped us weather this storm and we know we will come out of this stronger.”

Participants who have deferred from 2020 to 2021 will have the option to convert their registration fee to a 100% tax-deductible donation to Via of the Lehigh Valley or request a refund.  Runners who have deferred to 2021 or signed up for the Double Half Challenge will receive an email with further information. 

About Via of the Lehigh Valley

Serving our community since 1952, Via helps people reach their full potential.  Via provides services to 1,250 children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities living in Lehigh, Northampton, Carbon, Monroe, Bucks and Berks counties.  These services include vocational exploration, community employment, educational activities, volunteer and recreational opportunities for teens and adults, and early intervention therapies and inclusive education for young children.