Cody Davis, Stephenville native and current NFL defensive back for the Jacksonville Jaguars, will be giving away 100 percent of the proceeds from his youth football game this summer to the Stephenville Education Foundation.
On March 6, Cody took to Facebook asking residents for help with suggestions for “great charitable organizations operating in Stephenville, TX.”
“My football camps in the past have been supporting the Blue and Gold Legacy Project which is now a complete success! Looking for a new charity to be the beneficiary of my camp fundraising/profits. I have a few in mind but need the local input to help make my decision!” Cody wrote on his Facebook page.
“In the past, we’ve given that money to the Stephenville Athletic Department and they refurbished the weight room, so the past five years, Cody’s been giving his money to the athletic department,” said Cindy Davis, Cody’s mom. “They completely refurbished all of the weights, all of the weight machines, so at the end of last year, he talked to the coaches. He was going to try to put his money somewhere else since that goal was met to finish out the weight room.”
The community responded to the post and on March 21, Cody held a contest on his Twitter and Facebook accounts, asking for the community to vote for one of four non-profit organizations: Erath County Habitat for Humanity, Backpack Buddies of Erath County, Court Appointed Special Advocates for the Cross Timbers Area and Stephenville Education Foundation.
The contest ended at 3 p.m. Saturday, March 23, with Cody announcing that the winner was the Stephenville Education Foundation.
“Congratulations to the Stephenville Education Foundation! Voted on by the community, they have been selected to be the recipient of all proceeds from my youth football camp this year. Growing up a teacher's son I have always admired the hard work of our educators and have also seen the need for their support. Look forward to awarding this deserving foundation during camp week. See you in June!” Cody wrote on his Facebook page.
“To be included as one of the finalists among such a wonderful group of non-profits that do amazing work in our community was an honor,” said Director of Stephenville Education Foundation Mindy Wooley. “The foundation is so excited to have been chosen as the non-profit that Cody Davis will be giving the proceeds of his camp funds to this year.”
Cody’s sixth annual youth football camp is available for boys and girls in grades first through sixth and will be held from 8 a.m.-12:30 p.m. June 22 at Stephenville High School.
The camp is free, made possible by a grant from the NFL.
The Davis family relies on sponsors, like Cody’s main corporate sponsor, Bruner Motors Inc., and the camp sales in order to raise money for non-profit organizations.
“It’s really the sponsorship money and the camp sales. We sell items at the camp to the campers. Basically, it’s NFL stuff that Cody has worn in a football game or something like that but camp sales, gears, footballs and stuff like that. Our sponsors are really great. The past five years, they give their money, and their names are put on the back of our T-shirts. We have different levels of donations and all that money goes straight to the foundation. It’ll be neat to see how that’s given out,” Cindy said.
Cindy estimates that $11,000 will be raised.
She also said that donating the money to the Education Foundation is “dear to the heart” because she is a retired teacher who taught at Stephenville for over 18 years. And not only is Cody’s mom a teacher, but his grandmother was as well.
Camp registration will open on Monday, April 22. Only 150 kids are able to join the camp so Cindy encourages the public to sign up as soon as possible.
Once registration opens, there will be 100 spots available online by visiting sotg.eventbrite.com and 50 paper registrations available exclusively at Bruner Motors.
“We are so thankful to Cody Davis and his family for continuing to give back to the Stephenville community,” Wooley said. “As an alumni, he has been generously giving to our community for a number of years.
“Thank you to everyone who voted and chose the Stephenville Education Foundation as the non-profit of choice. We could not do it without the community's help.”