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Homeward Pikes Peak's Holmes planning private addiction recovery clinic

By Jakob Rodgers, The Gazette (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

March 14--Homeward Pikes Peak's outgoing chief plans to shift his focus from combating homelessness to helping people recover from drug addiction.

Bob Holmes is starting a for-profit addiction recovery center called STAR-Colorado, which is expected to open April 1 at 5250 Pikes Peak Highway in Cascade, he said Thursday.

Holmes announced his resignation last week as Homeward Pikes Peak's chief executive after leading the nonprofit for 11 years. His last day will be March 28.

About 45 people gave him a standing ovation Thursday during a monthly meeting of homeless service providers that Holmes has led for several years.

Homeward Pikes Peak was founded about 10 years ago to coordinate the region's services to homeless people and transitional housing programs.

The transition in leadership comes at a turbulent time for the nonprofit, which closed the Aztec Motel -- a transitional housing program that ended in November amid deep funding woes. A new initiative that Holmes envisioned to take its place -- a transitional housing program for mothers in rehab -- has stalled.

Also, the nonprofit gave up its oversight duties because it was operating as a direct service provider, which created a conflict of interest for an agency assigned to coordinate regional services.

After Thursday's meeting, Holmes attributed his resignation to a few factors, including his long tenure at the nonprofit and the shift in Homeward Pikes Peak's mission from oversight agency to providing services and support to people in need.

"It was a good time for me to depart -- and very positively," Holmes said.

Holmes' new program is a 30-day treatment center that can house up to 16 people who could receive treatment from a staff of clinicians including a physician, a physician's assistant and a dietitian, he said. Catered meals will be offered 12 times a week, and clients can participate in daily yoga sessions.

Holmes said the program will operate on a self-pay model, with eligible clients able to claim it through their insurance policies.

All of it will happen at a tobacco-free facility where at least one psychologist will host individual and group therapy sessions, Holmes said, Alternative therapy techniques will be featured, such as eye movement desensitization and reprocessing therapy, according to a brochure that Holmes passed out at Thursday's meeting.

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"We want to put out an array of techniques for people to cope -- not only with their addictions, but to find out what the triggers are for addictions, and then to find out what caused the triggers," Holmes said. "We're working back."

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(c)2014 The Gazette (Colorado Springs, Colo.)

Visit The Gazette (Colorado Springs, Colo.) at www.gazette.com

Distributed by MCT Information Services

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