There are a lot of reasons why donors choose to create a legacy with the Red Deer & District Community Foundation. Here are some of their stories.

The Anderson Family Fund was created in 2011 by Doug and Erin Anderson, who wanted to build a flexible fund that would provide much-needed resources to valuable community organizations and initiatives.

Through a donor advised endowment fund, which allows donors to participate in selecting grant recipients, the Andersons are able to respond to the changing needs of the community. With help from the RDDCF, the Andersons are able to identify the causes and initiatives most in need of their help and allocate their funds accordingly.

A long-time volunteer and community advocate, Doug believes that the RDDCF provides everyone with the opportunity to give, regardless of the size of gift, to any cause. Both Doug and Erin also believe in passing on the legacy of giving to their children. By establishing a fund, the Andersons can share those values with their children as they support the community as a family.

The Vogelzang Family Fund was created in 2010 by John and Casey Vogelzang to provide much-needed resources for aboriginal youth to attend the annual Dreamcatcher Aboriginal Youth Conference at Grant MacEwan University.

The Dreamcatcher Aboriginal Youth Conference offers aboriginal youth from across Canada the opportunity to come together and learn about educational and employment opportunities, while celebrating their culture and making new friends. The goal of this conference is self-empowerment, and in creating this fund, the Vogelzangs helped in that empowerment as these young people built their skills, confidence, and connections.

Through a donor advised endowment fund, which allows donors to participate in selecting grant recipients, the Vogelzangs made a five-year commitment to provide bursaries so aboriginal youth could attend the conference. They felt that this type of fund offered the best opportunity for success and long-term sustainability, thanks to administrative support, other donations and investments, and increased community awareness.

The Ford Family Endowment Fund was created in 2013 when long-time Penhold residents Stewart and Eileen Ford donated $500,000 to invest in the future of students graduating from the Penhold Crossing High School, to pursue post-secondary education.

For Stewart, whose parents were teachers, and Eileen, who taught briefly at Penhold School, this fund is a tribute to the value of high-caliber education opportunities in small rural towns. Their grandchildren have attended Penhold School, and thanks to initiative of the Town of Penhold, their oldest grandchild was part of the first grade 7 class at Penhold Crossing High School.

In the Ford family, giving back to the community has always been a way of life. From a young age, Stewart learned that his hard work could be used to do good things for other people, and through this scholarship fund, the Ford family legacy of philanthropy will live on in perpetuity.

The Chapman Literacy Endowment Fund was created in 2014 by long-time Red Deerians Tom and Joan Chapman, who donated $325,000 to support the Red Deer Public Schools’ Reading College Program.

Launched in 2012, the Reading College Program helps grade 2 students who are struggling with reading by helping them build their reading and writing skills, along with their knowledge, confidence, and creativity. Over the course of 22 days spent at the Red Deer College campus, these young Red Deerians learn about future careers, participate in community activities, develop life skills, and have a whole lot of fun.

Both Tom and Joan have seen the impact of this program first-hand and how it creates life-changing opportunities for these young students. Through this open fund, generous organizations, businesses, and citizens like the Chapmans are able to enhance the quality of life for our youth through improved literacy now and into the future.