Donations accepted for Table Rock Lake boat disaster

Donations are being accepted to support needs of victims, families and others involved in the tragic sinking of the sightseeing boat on Table Rock Lake near Branson, Missouri, Thursday night.



The Community Foundation of the Ozarks and its affiliates, the Table Rock Lake Community Foundation and Community Foundation of Taney County, have opened the Branson Area Disaster Relief Fund to accept secure, tax-deductible donations via online donations or checks.

Donations can be made by credit card at: cfozarks.org/donate – choose the Branson Area Disaster Relief Fund at the top of the drop-down menu. Checks noted for the fund can be sent to: Community Foundation of the Ozarks, P.O. Box 8960, Springfield, MO, 65801.

Additional information and updates will be posted at: givebranson.org.

The CFO and its affiliates will work with local leaders and case managers to support needs such as funeral, travel and transportation expenses for the victims and families. The American Red Cross has opened a family assistance center for those affected by the tragedy that has claimed 17 lives when an amphibious sightseeing boat capsized in high waves and winds Thursday evening.

The CFO works through case management and nonprofit providers to support the victims’ needs. The CFO does not provide money directly to individuals, per IRS regulations, but offers assistance such as gas cards and paying other costs directly to vendors.

Depending on donation support and needs, affiliate foundation leaders also can decide to use funds for longer-term needs such as mental-health counseling, emergency management operations or other issues that will arise related to this disaster.

The CFO has a record of disaster philanthropy experience dating to 2003 through events such as the Branson Leap Day tornado in 2012, the Joplin tornado in 2011 and last summer’s extensive river flooding in south-central Missouri.

The CFO is a regional public charitable foundation marking 45 years since its founding in 1973. It serves 58 counties across central and southern Missouri through a network of donors, nonprofit partners and 49 affiliate foundations. The CFO holds assets of about $283 million as of June 30 in about 3,500 funds.