Tax credits offered for Boys and Girls Club of the Heartland donations

Tuesday, June 11, 2024
Hillview students learned about planets and galaxies while creating a watercolor galaxy, their own planet, and galaxies in a jar during the week of May 4.
Photo provided

Approximately $350,000 in tax credits will help grow programs for youth in the area.

The Boys & Girls Club of the Heartland has received $150,000 in tax credits for its Hillview site. The tax credits were awarded by the Missouri Department of Economic Development, as part of $6 million in disbursements statewide.

Whole Kids Outreach, which serves 10 counties, will also receive $199,952 in tax credits for their summer care, and weekend and seasonal programming.

The tax credits can be accepted in July, said Chris Rushin, chief executive officer for Boys & Girls Club of the Heartland.

Donors can spread the tax-exempt donations over five years, he explained.

“We’re very thankful to the Missouri Department of Economic Development for approving the tax credits for our Neelyville program,” Rushin shared. “This gives stakeholders an opportunity to receive a 50% tax credit on their state tax liability. We are more than happy to talk about the advantages for our contributors as 100% of the funds raised for this stay in the local economy.”

BGCH has been in the process of expanding its ability to serve students in the Neelyville district, Rushin said.

The group will offer a full-day Monday program in the fall, said Robbie Toth-Cosby, chief operating officer. Already 39 students have signed up for this option, as Neelyville makes a transition in the new school year to a Tuesday-Friday school week.

As long as staff is available, spots will be available, said Toth, who hopes to see at least 50 youth participate in the full-day Monday program.

The program also had more than 80 students in its after-school Neelyville program in the last school year.

“The kids are really excited to have that constant,” Toth-Cosby said. “I’m excited about the opportunities we’re going to be able to give the kids.”

Programming helps students meet educational goals and offers character-building courses, health lifestyle classes and more. BGCH also hopes to expand its offerings to Neelyville teens through its College Kids Program. It served 10 students in the last school year and hopes to help 15 in the new school year.

This program allows students to take one college class each in the fall and spring, at no cost. Students can have up to six general education classes completed by the end of their senior year.

BGCH is also working with Three Rivers College to offer a full-day certificate program on Mondays for Neelyville students to attend the electrical process technician course.

“(These funds) will help with paying for the classes, transportation and the staffing, all the needs of the program,” Toth-Cosby said.

Whole Kids Outreach

Whole Kids Outreach, which is based in Ellington, provides services throughout the surrounding area.

Tax credits will help serve at-risk youth programs for ages 4-12 years old and at-risk youth counselors ages 14-19 years old.

“Educational and recreational programs are offered to assist youth with achieving resiliency, health, safety and social skills,” organizers report. “At-risk summer camp counselors and volunteers are provided training for leadership, professionalism, child development, organization, problem-solving skills, safety, peer negotiation and employment skills.”

The state DED tax credits are also for 50% of donations to WKO.

“We’re proud to assist organizations that provide critical services to Missourians through the Youth Opportunities Program,” said Gov. Mike Parson. “Recipients of this program are putting funds to good use by implementing projects that make lasting, positive differences for youth statewide.”

The Youth Opportunities Program makes these credits possible.

YOP helps broaden and strengthen opportunities for positive development and participation in community life for youth, and state officials. The program allows organizations to leverage private-sector funds by providing partial state tax credits to businesses and individuals making contributions to approved youth development or crime prevention projects.

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