Child Safe of Central Missouri is offering a new program that will net charitable donors 50 percent in tax credits for every $100 given to the agency.
The Champion for Children Tax Credits program is new this year, said Executive Director Carolyn Green, but it’s based on a similar tax credit program Child Safe had previously.
“We had the Children in Crisis tax credits for five years or so but it expired last August when the Missouri legislature decided not to re-authorize it,” she said. “This year they brought it back with a new name but it’s the same program as before, just donate $100 or more to us and you’ll be eligible for up to 50 percent in tax credits. It’s very simple.”
According to Green because the Children in Crisis program was ended, Child Safe saw a 40 percent drop in charitable donations last year, something she hopes will not be the trend this year.
“Normally we see our biggest donations around Christmastime and last year we were down so much, I really think it was because we couldn’t offer the tax credits,” she said. “So we’re very excited to have it back this year, we’re hoping to see our numbers tick up a little.”
Equally important are the donations themselves. With about 30 percent of Child Safe’s budget coming from fundraising and donations, it’s important those unrestricted dollars keep coming into the agency, Green said.
“Grants are very specific about what you can and can’t spend the money on,” she said. “Our biggest expense is payroll and benefits and that’s covered by a grant. But there are so many other important things you wouldn’t even think about — office supplies, utility costs, phone, travel — all those things have to come from our unrestricted dollars budget.”
The tax credits are retroactive from Jan. 1, Green added, and both individuals and businesses can take advantage of the program. For more information on the Champion for Children tax credits or Child Safe, go to childsafehouse.org or call 829-3434.