In a world where many folks keep others at arm’s length, Jody Evans held her arms wide open for everyone.
“It was in Jody’s nature to help others, especially those who were less fortunate,” says her mom Janet Evans. “Right from the start she displayed kindness and a capacity for wanting to help others.”
When Jody died tragically in an automobile accident with her brother Michael in 2016 at the age of 46, her friends and family took a page from the way she had lived her life and established the Jody Evans Memorial Fund with the Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta.
Born and raised in the Peace Country, Jody had a love of the outdoors and other fun activities, combined with a compassionate nature, which led to her career choices in Recreation Administration and Social Work. Working as a coordinator for the Red Cross from 1998 to 2007, Jody worked for the Country of Grande Prairie Family and Community Support Services (FCSS) from 2007 until her untimely death in 2016.
In 2014, she was wrapping up her Master of Social Work from the University of Calgary, joining the Community Social Development Team at the City of Grande Prairie to fulfill her practical requirements for the program. Jody planned and executed a study involving 17 single parents and their experiences living in Grande Prairie, reporting her findings and recommendations back to city council. Her work spearheaded a conversation that led to the City of Grande Prairie launching the Low Income Transit Access Program in 2015.
The program has assisted more than 700 individuals a year in accessing free transportation in Grande Prairie. It’s a lasting legacy Jody’s family and friends will always be proud of.
With her masters complete and three children entering young adulthood, Jody found herself with extra free time and true to her nature got involved in her community. She joined the Rotary Club of Grande Prairie Sunrise as well as 100 Women Who Care Grande Prairie.
Admired by her friends, family and colleagues for her unassuming personality and ability to nurture others, being open, kind, and level headed through all aspects of her life, adversity or success, Jody’s time with these organizations was tragically cut short in 2016.
Days after the collision, Jody’s friends at 100 Women Who Care felt a desire to honour their friend and contacted her family to inquire about causes Jody was passionate about. Many were mentioned and it was realized creating a legacy fund with the Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta would be a fitting tribute to Jody.
“We feel Jody would be so pleased that the 100 Women Who Care established the Jody Evans Memorial Fund, which will go to improve circumstances for those who are often overlooked in our society,” says Janet.
Inspired by Jody’s fund, Jody’s parents also established the Mike Evans Fun for Kids Fund to honour their son Michael, and Janet has also created her own Janet Evans Legacy Fund with the community foundation.
You can make a difference in our community – not only for today but forever. When you make a donation to the Jody Evans Community Fund, we invest that gift into a permanent endowment fund and the original gift is never spent. Earnings from your gift is distributed to projects in our community. Donations can be made online here – https://www.canadahelps.org/en/dn/39464 or by calling the Community Foundation at (780) 538-2820.