We help Veterans, military members and their families.
We provide myriad programs and services to make this happen.
Each program and service relies on one of three methods:
To become the premier community-based veteran, service member, and family focused organization.
Recognizing the responsibility of communities to help those who serve, Clear Path for Veterans empowers service members, veterans, and their families through supportive programs and services in a safe, respectful environment.
Clear Path for Veterans was established in 2011 by co-founders Melissa Spicer, Steve Kinne MD (ret), MPH Col. (ret.) USAF, and Melinda Sorrentino. They shared a vision that returning Veterans needed a “landing pad” to decompress, reintegrate, and realize wellness. The inaugural program, “Dogs2Vets” was the first concrete effort to help Veterans in this manner. Dogs2Vets participants find relief from their post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms in the form of a service dog, and the program helps Veterans find the right dog, and train it.
Only With Help
Clear Path relies on a partnership with the VA to help Veterans overcome the remaining struggles. Barriers to reintegration range from PTSD, anxiety, physical/mental disabilities, pain, culture shock, and difficulty accessing Veteran benefits. Veterans receive their physical and mental health services from the VA; they work with Clear Path to overcome barriers to reintegration. Clear Path’s programs and services focus on three methods to accomplish this: peer-to-peer mentoring, self-care and community involvement.
Clear Path’s property is a mixture of fields and woodlands; it sits atop a prominent ridge and offers miles of breathtaking views to the North from Lake Oneida to Oswego. Clear Path’s facility is located in both Madison and Onondaga counties, about 13 miles southeast of the Syracuse VA medical center. Clear Path’s outreach extends to the same 13-county catchment served by the VAMC. An informal partnership with the VA dates back to the founding in 2011. The VA continues to refer Veterans to Clear Path’s programs and services, some of which rely on VA diagnoses for admittance.
Who We Serve
Clear Path serves urban and rural Veterans alike. Many Veterans and retirees remain close to one of the several military bases in the 13-county region, from downtown Syracuse to the Adirondacks. The bases include the 10th Mountain Division’s Ft. Drum, the Air National Guard’s 174th Attack Wing, the Army National Guard’s 27th Brigade Combat Team, and Army, Navy and Marine Corps Reserve offices.
Clear Path’s programs and services are expansive. The Culinary program emphasizes culinary therapy and community integration. The Wellness program emphasizes complementary & alternative medicines and self-care education. The Wingman program emphasizes peer-to-peer mentoring and improved access to Veterans services. The Recreation & Agriculture programs emphasize community integration, recreational therapy, and overcoming disabilities. Clear Path’s 12,000 sq ft facility on 78 acres of rural property is well suited to providing tranquility conducive to the goals of these programs.