DED awards more than $5.8 million in tax credits to 34 organizations through the Youth Opportunities Program

The Department of Economic Development (DED) announced today that it will award more than $5.8 million in 50% tax credits to 34 organizations throughout Missouri through the Youth Opportunities Program (YOP) during its 2023 cycle.

“Missouri nonprofits provide our youngest and most vulnerable citizens with critically-needed services,” said Governor Mike Parson. “We’re proud to assist these organizations in their work to improve the lives of young people statewide. This program is supporting efforts that help build stronger communities and secure brighter futures.”

YOP helps broaden and strengthen opportunities for positive development and participation in community life for youth. The program allows nonprofit 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. YOP funds a variety of project types, including degree completion, internships and apprenticeships, mentoring, substance abuse prevention, violence prevention, counseling, and more.

“Strong communities are vital to creating opportunities for Missourians, including children,” said Maggie Kost, Acting Director of the Department of Economic Development. “As the future of our state, Missouri’s youth deserve safe places to live, grow, and become tomorrow’s leaders. The Youth Opportunities Program allows us to partner with organizations making a difference for kids and families.”

A total of up to $6 million are awarded through YOP annually, with projects limited to $200,000 in tax credits. Eligible applicants include nonprofit organizations, education institutions, faith-based organizations, local governments, and businesses that meet program requirements. YOP is administered by the Division of Business and Community Solutions. The full list of 2023 YOP recipients is available here.

For more information about the program, including upcoming application cycles, eligibility criteria, and frequently asked questions, visit the YOP webpage.

Testimonial from YOP recipient organization (Kids In The Middle, St. Louis region)

“The Youth Opportunities Program will help fund group and individual counseling for children whose families cannot afford the Kids In The Middle service fees. Families will be able to receive quality mental health care as they go through the transition and trauma of divorce or separation, regardless of income. Additionally, Kids In The Middle will continue expanding our services by bringing our evidence-based group counseling program to area children. We can remove barriers to those who might not otherwise be able to receive support due to geographic and/or transportation challenges.”

About the Missouri Department of Economic Development

The Missouri Department of Economic Development (DED) works to create an environment that encourages economic growth by supporting Missouri’s businesses and diverse industries, strengthening our communities, developing a talented and skilled workforce, and maintaining a high quality of life. As one team built around the customer and driven by data, DED aspires to be the best economic development department in the Midwest. Through its various initiatives, DED is helping create opportunities for Missourians to prosper.

For the latest updates on DED’s current or future programs and initiatives, visit DED’s website.