Joplin Companies Set Up Benevolence Funds to Help Employees

The Community Foundation of the Ozarks, with its Joplin-Carthage affiliate, has established several benevolence funds requested by Joplin area companies that want to help their employees and families start rebuilding their lives after the tornado.

In addition to their own contributions, the companies welcome any public donations to provide assistance directly to affected employees to address their most urgent needs. A benevolence fund allows companies to make charitable gifts to their employees without having the gift count as part of their taxable income. Donations to these funds are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by the IRS. The companies that so far have agreed to have their funds publicly acknowledged include:

  • LaBarge, Inc., an electronics manufacturing services provider, established the LaBarge Joplin Tornado Relief Fund to help those employees affected by the storm with a $50,000 contribution. The company also will match all funds contributed by LaBarge employees dollar for dollar to help its employees impacted by the tornado.
  • Leggett & Platt, a diversified manufacturer of engineered components and products, has established the  Leggett & Platt, Incorporated Benevolence Fund to meet emergency needs of affected  employees and families.  Leggett and Platt also donated $1  million to the general tornado relief efforts. More than 60 Joplin area employees were directly affected by the storm, including one who was killed along with his wife.
  • Mid-America Precision Products, LLC, which does custom machining of precision parts, sheet metal, finishing and assembly including military and space products for the U.S. government, established the MAPP Joplin Tornado Relief Fund to help its employees. The firm has eight employees who were seriously affected by the storm. It also sustained extensive roof and water damage at its 3236 W. 20th St., facility in Joplin and transferred 18 employees to its main facility.

The CFO and its affiliate, the Community Foundation of Southwest Missouri, Inc., also continue to accept donations designated for Joplin’s long-term future through the Joplin Recovery Fund. These funds will be used to support mid- to long-term recovery for civic, economic, human-service and education non-profits through a process to be developed by a local leadership group.

Regional community foundations are supporting and communicating the CFO’s Joplin Recovery Fund, including the Tulsa Community Foundation, the Oklahoma City Community Foundation, the Community Foundation of Southeast Kansas, and the Arkansas Community Foundation.

The CFO and CFSWM also are accepting donations for the Joplin Tornado First-Response Fund, set up at the request of Joplin city leaders to address more short-term needs.

Donations can be made online at: www.cfozarks.org/donate. Please note the specific fund, i.e., the name of the company, “Recovery Fund” or “First-Response Fund” in the fund/program box. Checks can be sent to: Community Foundation of the Ozarks, P.O. Box 8960, Springfield, MO, 65801.

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