CHICAGO — To honor the life of her 9-year-old boy, a Chicago mother has been busy collecting donations for her foundation’s annual back-to-school drive.
Jalisa Ford started the 1 Jar Foundation shortly after her son Janari Ricks was shot and killed on July 31, 2020 while playing outside in Cabrini Green.
“He was outgoing and played basketball, loved the Golden State Warriors,” Ford told WGN News. “He loved school and friends — if he had a dollar he was trying to figure out how to split it with friends.”
A 39-year-old man was charged with his murder the following week.
Since then, Ford has made it her mission to honor Janari by giving back to others, especially families impacted by gun violence.
“It’s a must that I continue that legacy in honor of him,” Ford said. “He was my only child.”
The 1 Jar Foundation, which recently established an office at 542 W. Hobbie Street, hopes to expand in the coming years to provide mental health resources and gun violence prevention.
In the meantime, Ford is holding her fourth annual back-to-school drive on Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. at the 18th District Police Station, located at 1160 N. Larrabee St.
All types of school supplies are welcomed with book bags being among the most-needed.