No More Sidelines announces $1.4 million fundraising effort for youth with special needs.
MUSKEGON, MI., December 4, 2018– Earlier today, No More Sidelines announced the Building Belonging campaign, a $1.4 million fundraising effort to provide expanded recreational facilities for youth and young adults with special needs.
Founded in 2005, No More Sidelines serves over 400 local families by providing enriching recreational, social, and skill-building activities for area youth with special needs and their families each year. These activities help build a network of support for these families and their children, leading to life-long friendships and a connected community that provides support for families working to raise children with disabilities.
Launched earlier this year, the Building Belonging campaign has raised more than $1,075,000 over the last several months, 77% of the overall campaign goal. 32 community donors, local businesses, and area foundations have supported the campaign to date.
No More Sidelines leaders plan to begin expansion of their home at 640 Seminole early next year. When complete, the expanded facility will feature an indoor soccer field, basketball and volleyball courts, and additional indoor recreational space. The new facility will provide significantly more space for program staff, volunteers, and area youth.
At today’s public announcement of the fund drive, Senior Vice President of West Shore Bank, David Ellis, President of the Shape Corporation, Mark White, President of the Hines Corporation, Larry Hines, and CEO of Nichols, Mike Olthoff, co-chairs of the campaign, invited the public to join in the fundraising effort which will continue through the end of the year.
“As we work to provide the very best in programming for children and youth with special needs, I am pleased to be part of an effort that truly gives area families a strong support network and provides children with a place where they feel like they belong,” said Larry Hines. “Demand for our programs is increasing,” said Mark white, “there are approximately 3,300 children with special needs in Muskegon, Ottawa and Oceana counties, and we anticipate serving more youth and families over the next several years.”
Dave Ellis announced that the campaign has received support from local and regional foundations, area businesses, and generous community donors. “We have been so fortunate to receive gifts to this important campaign. Our Campaign Cabinet joins me in thanking the community for their meaningful gifts. We now invite the broader community to help us complete this campaign effort. We welcome gifts of all sizes,” said Ellis.
Today’s announcement marks the beginning of the public phase of the $1.4 million campaign.
“This is an exceptional opportunity for the community to help build a strong network of support for children that sometimes struggle to find activities and opportunities that meet their abilities,” said Mike Olthoff. “If we can provide the venue, we know we can help more families,” he said.