This is the latest rendering of the front entrance to the Training for Life Campus. The left-hand side with the SOMO logo is the Centene Charitable Foundation Sports & Recreation Arena, while the right-hand side is where SOMO’s Headquarters and Central Area offices and the Missouri State Knights of Columbus Sports Education Multimedia Center will be housed.
34,000 sq.-ft. facility
What the floorplan could look like for the Training for Life Campus
“It is going to make me grow as an athlete and as a human being in everyday society. It will give us a chance to make ourselves accepted in the community and loved by others.”
— Derek Sandbothe, SOMO athlete talking about the Training for Life Campus
TLC Plans Take Shape
Late in 2016, Jefferson City officials unanimously approved for Special Olympics Missouri to build its Training for Life Campus on a 16.5-acre site at the northeast corner of U.S. Highway 54 and Missouri Highway 179. Mark Musso, SOMO president/CEO, put the new construction and its surroundings in a global perspective.
"I have personally toured other facilities, and this will be one of a kind and clearly the finest in the 175 countries with Special Olympics programs,” Musso said. “While some of them have sports venues for training, we will have the only campus that offers Healthy Athletes screening rooms equipped for health care professionals to conduct health screenings (vision, hearing, dentistry, podiatry, physical therapy, health promotion and sports physical exams) on each and every athlete.”
Musso said the free screenings include vision, hearing, dental, podiatry, physical therapy, health promotion and sports physical exams. The 34,000-square-foot structure will be complemented with a variety of outdoor recreational fields in the J.E. and L.E. Mabee Foundation, Inc., Outdoor Multi-Sport Training Area. In addition to the training areas, the outdoor complex will include a Law Enforcement Torch Run (R) plaza and several athlete and donor recognition areas.
SOMO has raised more than $16 million for the Training for Life Campus, and an additional $2.2 million is needed to complete the outdoor fields and purchase sports equipment.
"Many other U.S. and national Special Olympics programs have expressed great interest in visiting our campus to model similar programming in their locales," Musso said.
State awards extension of MDFB tax credits
Soon after SOMO announced plans for the Training for Life Campus, capital campaign leadership sought and secured Missouri tax credits for donors. Since then, tax credits have been an important benefit for donors supporting the Campus.
Starting in 2016 and extending through 2017, MDFB tax credits are available to any Missouri taxpayer who donates $1,000 or more to support the Training for Life Campus.
Using these MDFB tax credits, a donation to SOMO’s Training for Life Campus refunds more of your money to you than would be possible with a regular charitable donation.
These tax credits are available immediately through the Missouri Development Finance Board (MDFB), and represent a 50% tax credit for donations. Any Missouri taxpayer who donates $1,000 or more can get a tax credit of 50% which, combined with additional federal and state tax deductions, can reduce taxes even more.
This generous tax break (which results in an overall refund of $9,193) comes from the combination of the charitable deduction and the charitable tax credit. If the same donor did not use these tax credits, he/she would have a much smaller refund – just $5,830. By using the tax credit, the donor gets an additional $3,353 refund. The tax credit amplifies the impact of the deduction.
Donors should consult SOMO’s development team for specifics of how to take advantage of this generous tax credit program. Please contact Laurie Shadoan, Chief Advancement Officer for SOMO, at 913-789-0353 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about how your gift to support SOMO’s Training for Life Campus has rewards for both the athletes and you.
Here's an example of MDFB tax credits in action*
With a donation of $5,000 to the Training for Life Campus capital campaign, here's how a married couple with an adjusted gross income of $90,000 can benefit using MDFB tax credits:
Donation to TLC: $5,000
Reduction in Combined Federal and MO State Taxes Owed: $9,193
* For illustration purposes only. Consult a tax advisor for details
Recognition spaces introduced for Campus
There is a limited-time opportunity to secure lasting recognition for an athlete, team, volunteer, family or organization at the Training for Life Campus.
An Athlete Recognition Wall inside the multi-purpose arena within the Training for Life Campus main facility will feature gold, silver and bronze level Special Olympics recognition with customized inscriptions.
Outside, along the perimeter of the campus and outdoor playing fields, a Tribute Trail will feature permanent markers and benches, named in honor of a donor or a person the donor wishes to recognize. These trail markers are available to customize with messages.
From the Observation Patio overlooking the outdoor fields, there will be a Donor Plaza where supporters will be recognized and visitors can gather on their way to the various athletic fields. The terrace overlooking the Donor Plaza allows guests to view many of the outdoor athletic training fields.
In addition, you may honor a law enforcement officer or department with the purchase of a paver stone on the Law Enforcement Torch Run (LETR) Donor Plaza, to be located among the outdoor playing fields of the campus.
All contributions are tax-deductible. Tax credits are available for contributions of $1,000 or more.
Athletes earn letter jackets to raise funds for Campus
As part of its fundraising efforts for the Training for Life Campus, Special Olympics Missouri athletes are raising funds on their own. Using personal fundraising web pages specially developed for them to involve their family and friends, SOMO athletes have already raised over $200,000 toward campaign goals.
When participating athletes reach certain milestones in their fundraising, they earn special awards – like class rings ($2,500) and letterjackets ($5,000). Many athletes who participate in Special Olympics do not earn letterjackets for sports at their schools, so Special Olympics Missouri pioneered this new tradition and tied it to fundraising efforts for the Training for Life Campus, the place that will give SOMO athletes a “home of their own.”
This effort is called the “Training for Life Charter Class.” Athletes who are members of this Charter Class, earning class rings and letterjackets, are chartering the recognition program for their fellow athletes.
The campus will allow for year-round sports training and is a facility that embodies the mission and vision of Special Olympics Missouri. Our 15,312 athletes are anxiously awaiting the campus that will be their first-ever home, specially designed for their athletic and health training needs.
To support the Training for Life Campus and bring SOMO athletes a true home of their own, visit somocampus.org or call Laurie Shadoan at (913) 789-0353.