FORT COLLINS, Colo., Feb. 18, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- A climbing expedition designed to help wounded veterans overcome barriers in their lives was announced today by Soldiers to Summits (S2S) and Wells Fargo. The expedition, Mission: Mt. Whitney, is led by S2S, a program of No Barriers USA that uses mountains as a metaphor and training ground to help empower veterans to overcome barriers and live a life of purpose. Sponsor Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a nationwide, diversified, community-based financial services company that has committed $35 million through 2015 to support veterans, military members and their families with sustainable housing, career transition and financial education.
"We want to let our veterans, military members and their families know we are there for them, and we want to do more for them. This is why Mission: Mt. Whitney is so exciting. For us, this isn't just a sponsorship, it's truly an honor," says Jerry Quinn, a reservist and Military Affairs program manager for Wells Fargo. "Soldiers to Summits helps veterans shatter the barriers in their lives. We are proud to be involved in this expedition."
"I'm looking forward to seeing the outcome of the expedition and what the soldiers will do in their challenges, breaking down barriers, and how our Wells Fargo team and others will be inspired to break down barriers in our own surroundings and do more with what we have," adds Quinn.
Dave Shurna, No Barriers USA executive director, says, "The No Barriers mindset is the goal and guide for all Soldiers to Summits programs. During the Mt. Whitney journey, participants will experience physical challenges, team building and training with world-renowned mountaineers such as Charley Mace, Jeff Evans and Erik Weihenmayer, the first blind climber to summit Mount Everest, and a No Barriers founder. Through these experiences, wounded soldiers innovate through adversity and step up to lead and serve others."
Along with two major training events this summer, expedition participants will take part in a multi-day service project prior to their expedition launch the first of September with summit date planned for September 11. At 14,505 ft., Mt. Whitney is part of the Sierra Nevada mountain range and is the tallest mountain in the contiguous United States.
To be a part of Mission: Mt. Whitney, veterans or soldiers can apply or be nominated beginning today through March 21, 2014. Ideal candidates "possess a desire to overcome their barriers and live a life of purpose," and a wide range of disabilities including blindness, amputation, severe burns, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) can be accommodated. Candidates will need to dedicate themselves to several months of physical training and participate in pre- and post-program webinars, training and events. To apply, nominate or find out more, go to S2S2014.org.
About Soldiers to Summits Soldiers to Summits is a program of No Barriers USA, whose mission is to unleash the potential of the human spirit. Soldiers to Summits accomplishes this by building transformative experiences designed to help veterans overcome barriers and live a life of purpose. Their journey-based expeditions range from one day to three weeks in length, and have taken the organization to Nepal, Ecuador, Peru, the South Pole and locations around the US.
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About Wells Fargo's Military Affairs Program In 2012, Wells Fargo created a Military Affairs Program to elevate its efforts in serving active duty military and veterans, and named a Military Affairs Program manager.
Wells Fargo also announced that it is committing $35 million over the next three years as part of its ongoing commitment to supporting military service members, veterans and their families. The commitment includes real estate owned (REO) property donations and support valued at $30 million to qualifying nonprofits that serve military service members and veterans, hiring and mentoring initiatives, customized financial education efforts, and funds for philanthropic donations and sponsorships.
In 2013, one year after announcing the $35 million, three year commitment to helping veterans, military members and their families with sustainable housing, career transition and financial education, Wells Fargo is proud to announce it has donated more than 85 real estate owned (REO) properties to wounded warriors, participated in more than 150 military job fairs and launched its Hand on Banking for Military financial education program.