BETHLEHEM, PA, May 10, 2019 – Via of the Lehigh Valley was recently awarded a $5,000 grant from PNC Foundation to support Reading Together at Home, an early literacy program.

“We are grateful to PNC Foundation for their generous gift to this important program,” said Jerry Somers, chairman of Via’s board of directors. “Children who are exposed to reading at a young age are better prepared for school. It has been shown that exposure to pre-reading and reading skills greatly increases a child’s overall ability to read, write and learn.”

Every encounter a child has with language is a form of early literacy: hearing a parent’s voice, holding a book, listening to and singing songs, watching family members read, recognizing letters and their sounds, and listening and responding to stories. Early literacy starts at birth, and it’s so much more than being able to read, write, and understand language. Via’s reading coaches work together with children and families to establish literacy skills and a love of reading. This program is free to families and is provided in the family’s home.

“Extensive research indicates that the return on investment in high-quality early education and school readiness initiatives are significant and long lasting – impacting our children, our society and the health of our economy,” said Pete Danchak, PNC regional president for Northeast Pennsylvania. Via of the

Lehigh Valley’s literacy program provides valuable opportunities for young children to enhance their skills.”

About PNC Foundation

The PNC Foundation, which receives its principal funding from The PNC Financial Services Group (, actively supports organizations that provide services for the benefit of communities in which it has a significant presence. The foundation focuses its philanthropic mission on early childhood education and community and economic development, which includes the arts and culture. Through Grow Up Great, its signature cause that began in 2004, PNC has created a bilingual $500 million, multi- year initiative to help prepare children from birth to age 5 for success in school and life.

About Via of the Lehigh Valley

Serving our community since 1952, Via helps the people we serve to reach their full potential. Via gives children a chance for early success through speech, occupational and physical therapy. Via helps people find jobs in our community that leave them satisfied and fulfilled. And Via helps people, from teens to retirement, connect and live in their community by volunteering and participating in recreational activities. Visit to learn more about Via’s services.


Information provided to TVL by:
Jillian Lovejoy
Communications Director, Via of the Lehigh Valley
336 W. Spruce Street, Bethlehem, PA 18018