In 2014, a Marine Corps Veteran and prominent Colorado Springs businessman envisioned creating a nonprofit organization to serve the Pikes Peak region's vast military and veteran populations, providing needed services not met by any other military, governmental or private agency. It was determined early on that, while many services exist for veterans and active-duty military throughout the community, navigating the system to obtain needed services is a significant challenge for and hinders access to these services. None of these organizations offered a full range of services in one location. With this realization the vision for Mt. Carmel was born. With the recruitment of a retired U.S. Army Colonel and former Ft. Carson Garrison Commander as the first Chief Operating Officer, and with a large facility and startup seed funding in hand, Mt. Carmel hired a mostly veteran staff and began operations March 1, 2016. Since the founding, more than 19,000 individuals have visited the campus, including over 3,700 individual veteran clients totaling 17,000 client visits. Mt. Camel's programs have placed over 900 veterans in meaningful jobs with startup salaries averaging over $26.00 per hour.
The housing assistance program has assisted more than 700 individuals with emergency and transitional housing, and the behavioral health program has served over 500 clients by professional counselors and interns from local college graduate degree programs. These programs are supported by more than 100 volunteers who have provided over 7,700 hours of service. Mt. Carmel's programs continue to expand, surpassing all expectations. The range of Mt. Carmel programs are helping veterans achieve a better life by effectively leveraging their skills into successful civilian lives. This has inspired the community to engage in our innovative approach with dedicated volunteer leadership, financial support and committed partners - enhancing a program now recognized as an effective and sustainable approach.