Volunteers Saved YESS $880
A big thank you to the Des Moines Police Department, Brother 2 Brother, and teachers from McCombs and Indian Hills Middle Schools for painting our newest unit, Sarah's Place. The new, bright colors make the unit more inviting for clients in need of a safe, welcoming space.
Charity Concert Success
Professionals for Charity usually likes to kick off the summer with a live charity concert for YESS. This year it was kiboshed by COVID and the event became a virtual concert. On June 25, Tim Stop performed an amazing concert on Facebook Live for fans and YESS supporters. In just one hour, they raised $2,820 for YESS. Thank you P4C and Tim!
Sharing the Love
Once again, Ramsey Subaru selected YESS as a charity benefitting from Subaru of America's Share the Love event. We are overwhelmed by their very generous gift of $23,722. Donations like this keep us moving forward to protect Iowa's most vulnerable.
We're not "Teasing"
After a social media plea for hair care supplies, donors did not disappoint. On top of all the wonderful gifts from Amazon, Jordan Creek Town Center brought us a truckload of hair care items and buckets of fountain coins totaling $2,460. Afterwards, the kids had an amazing spa day!
Several provisions in the CARES Act makes 2020 the perfect year to contribute to YESS. Be sure to consult your tax advisor to determine the effect the CARES Act has on your individual circumstances.
  • Individuals who do not itemize deductions: The CARES Act includes a one-time, above-the-line deduction for taxpayers who do not itemize deductions for cash contributions of up to $300 made to charitable organizations in calendar 2020.

  • Individuals who itemize deductions: The CARES Act increases the limits on charitable deductions made by individuals who itemize their taxes. The current limits for an individual's tax deductions for charitable contributions in cash (60% cap of adjusted gross income) are suspended for contributions made in 2020, making cash contributions fully (100%) deductible.
  • Corporations: For corporations, the limit on charitable deductions for cash contributions in 2020 increased from 10% to 25%.
  • IRA Qualified Charitable Distributions (QCD): The CARES Act did not change the rules around the QCD, which allows individuals over 70½ years old to donate up to $100,000 in IRA assets directly to charities annually, without taking the distribution into taxable income. However, as noted above, under the CARES Act, an individual can elect to deduct 100 percent of their adjusted gross income for cash charitable contributions. This effectively affords individuals over 59½ years old the benefits similar to a QCD; they can take a cash distribution from their IRA, contribute the cash to charity, and may completely offset tax attributable to the distribution by taking a charitable deduction in an amount up to 100% of their AGI for the 2020 tax year. 

This year, greater tax incentives for your donations are allowed more than ever before and, perhaps, more than will ever exist in the near future. Again, please consult your tax advisor as to how the CARES Act may impact you.
Jacob Stastny
"Skill-building works in partnership with therapy." Jacob explains, "Pretend a child's mental health is a sinking boat. Therapy patches the holes, while we work on getting the water out."

Jacob is Hope Hall's Behavioral Services Manager and oversees the Behavioral Health Intervention Services (BHIS) department. BHIS is an at-home, skills-based counseling service for those with a mental health diagnosis. These counselors work on various skills like communication, anger management, self-esteem, and listening, among others.

We're Going Someplace Great
Leisa Fox, CEO
I read the book “Good to Great” 19 years ago, referring to it regularly as a leadership guide. Ten years later, I met author Jim Collins, who embodied the leadership traits of those he had studied. He was humble, kind, practical and confident.

While the entire book guides leaders on taking good things and making them great, two sections align critically with YESS today.

Level 5 Leadership, the highest level of executive capabilities, couples two imperative traits: Humility + Will. As I approach 18 months as CEO, I know but a fraction of what I need to know about children’s welfare, human services, sex trafficking, Medicaid reimbursement, the Department of Human Services, Juvenile Court, etc. I’ve learned the need to be humble and ask for help when you need it holds true. While I’m not an expert on those issues, I know who is both on my team and in the community. If I continue to listen to them, we will improve the outcomes for the kids, which serves our mission to “change lives by protecting children and empowering families.”

In addition to humility, this work takes will. In a recent meeting with my senior team, I quoted Glennon Doyle, founder and president of Together Rising: “Keep going. That’s all you have to do, ever. You really don’t have to be amazing or fierce or beautiful or successful or good. Just keep going, please. Slowly is fine. Crawling is fine. No feeling is final. Except hope.” Today I have great hope because we are living our mission and we are committed to serving our kids in the greatest way possible.
Another Collins concept is getting the right people on the bus. In his research, Collins found executives who ignite transformations from good to great, did not first determine where to drive the bus and then decide who should take it there. No, they discovered first to get the right people on the bus (and the wrong people off the bus) and then figure out where to drive it. These executives said, “Look, I don’t really know where we should take this bus. But if we get the right people on the bus, the right people in the right seats, and the wrong people off the bus, then we’ll figure out how to take it someplace great.”

YESS is going someplace great. We have some of the finest staff in the world. They show up day after day in an unpredictable, volatile world and give their all. Our board members have committed hours, years and sometimes decades leading us to greater heights, not settling for the status quo. Our donors, funders and volunteers show up year after year, giving and giving so our kids have access to more than our reimbursement rates could ever sustain. Finally, our kids. Wow, our kids. If I could, I’d spend the lion’s share of my time learning from them. Their resiliency, their intelligence, their dependence on us. That is the fire that fuels us all. We will go someplace great for them because they deserve it.