• August 22, 2014

Belton center struggling with funding

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Posted: Thursday, March 20, 2014 4:30 am

BELTON — For decades, the Belton Senior Activity Center has been helping people, as well as increasing its services. Jay Taggart said he hopes nothing needs to change.

However, Taggart, who is president of the Belton Area Citizens for Seniors board of directors, said that for the first time in its history, the senior center, at 842 S. Mitchell St., failed to receive enough funds from community donors to reach its annual budget.

The center is divided into two sections, each giving specific services to qualifying Belton residents age 60 and older: one service provides meals for its recipients; the other offers activities, such as exercise programs, entertainment and social opportunities.

The meals service receives some federal funds, but the activities programs rely on volunteer workers as well as private donations and fundraising efforts from individuals and organizations.

The activity center has an annual budget of about $75,000, but this year, the shortfall was about $20,000, Taggart said.

In addition, some operating expenses rose as the donations fell.

The center managed to make ends meet this year because it was able to draw from reserve funds, but Taggart said that money source isn’t. “We still have some good support; we just need more. ... The support is out there.”

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