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2020 Top-Rated Nonprofit

The Listening, Inc.

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Arts Services, Education, Literacy, Performing Arts, Remedial Reading & Encouragement

Mission: Our mission is to engage, change and save lives with community engagement and youth programming.

Results: - Launched Central Virginia's first Freedom School program in 2019! - Featured over 100 local poets, dancers, musicians and writers on our platform! - Awarded Lynchburg Living's Giving Back Award in 2017, 2019, and 2020!

Target demographics: local artists, young readers and writers, local activists and advocates

Direct beneficiaries per year: serve over 30 families through our Freedom School program

Geographic areas served: Central Virginia

Programs: open mic sessions, Freedom School program, Young Lit & Free program, Battle Symphony Peer support Group

Community Stories

26 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I love how engaged and committed The Listening is to creating safe spaces for people in our Lynchburg, VA community. This work inspired me to join and help them make a difference.

Donor

Rating: 5

The Listening occupies a space in the non-profit world in Central Virginia that no other non-profit can touch. Their innovation and commitment to promoting the arts as a means to heal and make a change in the world is absolutely inspiring. I've watched them blossom and grow over the past 7 years and I can't wait to see what else is in store!

Angelina D.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Professional and caring group of people who love the arts. All events that are organized and serves the human nature of the creative and well as the creative consumer.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The Listening is an invaluable organization in our community. They provide an outlet for so many to find their voice and be heard. They serve the youth in many of our schools and provide adults with a vehicle to promote positive change in our neighborhoods. Long live THE LISTENING!

Benjamin S.1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I was there when this whole thing started. To see The Listening grow, evolve, and become so much more than an open mic event in a small cafe has been incredible. The work they are doing in and for their community is invaluable. This is how you run a non-profit. This is how you make a difference.

NickGeorge

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Being a part of The Listening's team has given me the opportunity to use my talents and passions to contribute to Lynchburg's poetry scene. I look forward to the future!

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

There is so much potential for an organization like this in our community! Let’s get to work!

Vicki H.3

Board Member

Rating: 5

I attended my first Open Mic during the pandemic and after the killing of George Floyd. I did not know what to expect, but I was comfortable tuning in virtually. I was asked to share some form of spoken word and I read "Mother to Son" by Langston Hughes. It was great to read that piece and be able to share and relate with the other attendees at the virtual event. I loved that conversation was part of the evening - not just a performance. And we were all there to listen to each other, comfort each other, validate each other. I've gone to other Open Mics with TLI and it's always a surprise as to who will be listening and who will be sharing; but it's always worth it.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I think this organization, even though they've been active for only a few years, can do a lot for this city and the artists that need the opportunity

plus, it's not a lot of spaces that encourage people to really say whats on their mind

Madalyn S.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Great people that care about their community. Understand the culture of LYH and develop relevant ideas in response to it.

Salina E.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Unfortunately, I don’t live in the area and have yet to get to a live event (by the looks though they are incredible). I started tuning in to the live sessions during the pandemic and they gave me life! Seriously, the live broadcasts provided a light and a connection that broke through the heaviness hanging over 2020. The artists in each session are incredibly talented and inspiring. Being able to tune in breathed life into a lot of nights. Thank you!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am one of the Creative Citizens for The Listening! I absolutely love all of the opportunities presented. We get to interact with the community & build meaningful relationships with eachother. I’ve always had a passion for helping others & spreading positive vibes & this non profit allows me to do both!!!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Phenomenal mission and vision that is incredibly needed at this time

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Listening Inc. Has the mission ro engage, save, and change lives through the performing arts throughout many different forms of community. I am a TLI Creative Citizen and I am proud to be a part of this nonprofit. The Listening changed my life about a year ago. I was at my lowest in life and I didn't know how to continue without any motivation. Then I was invited to be a part of The Listening by teaching a class called Young, Lit, and Free. That day something had changed and made my journey a lot different. I am able to do something I love all the time and give back to my community. I am able to accept change and save other young adults through their art. I am able to call this community of creative citizens my family and my home. - Seymoné

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The Listening provides an atmosphere that is conducive for unity, self expression and service for the community. It is necessary for the culture.

Britt G.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Listening is truly here to save and change lives! I am so blessed to be a part of this amazing organization.

Angela Dianne J.

Donor

Rating: 5

My Son-In-Law is Nicholas George, Founder.
I was with him when the Listening was birthed.

Nicholas Steven G.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This org is Truly changing things here in Lynchburg! After this first Freedom School summer, we have to make sure they are here for the long haul!

Dori B.

Board Member

Rating: 5

The Listening has invited me — a white middle class woman— to learn more about the women, men, youth and elders of my community who do not look like me. Together we are growing community, sharing meals, and doing the small work that can lead to big change. We CAN create a future where all people thrive and The Listening is my local go-to for building Beloved Community.

1 Larry T.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Listening is an organization that deeply supports and promotes local artists. The organization creates and hosts events where artists can gather, network, and share their content. The Listening also plays a role in promoting education and social justice throughout the city of Lynchburg. It has been a privilege and a great honor to work with this organization and see it grow on a month to month basis.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Being back in “The Burg” was a hard transition. Finding The Listening was a great discovery to help keep my inner poet alive. Seeing the great milestones they’ve achieved and the many lives they’ve changed by creating a safe space for people of all walks to share, gave me that extra push to keep writing and sharing. They are seriously Lynchburg’s best kept secret and it’s Time for the world to know! Performing arts now has a deeper meaning because of how they’ve used it to shed light difficult issues.

Danielle V.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

From their community enriching events, to nurturing young artists, to their work giving back to school age children through the Freedom Schools, The Listening, Inc is a valuable organization for Lynchburg, VA. I would highly reccomend that people engage with this group as they strive to change lives through the performing arts.

Feyth S.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Been following The Listening, Inc. since the beginning. The open mics and other events have been liberating and community minded. Glad to be apart of the growth from supporting the open mics to volunteering with the CDF Freedom Schools. They are definitely a game-changer for the youth in our community!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

No organization has connected with me as much as The Listening. For the first time ever during the “Home” open mic I reflected on my mother who had committed suicide when I was 19. For the first time in years I simply remembered her in a space full of strangers.. but I never felt so welcomed. They allowed me to celebrate and mourn, to remember and be filled with love, to be me and Not have to change to make anyone else comfortable. It is because of the Listening that I found my voice and I thank Nick for creating the space for that to happen. Words matter, expressing ourselves matters, speaking those words into the atmosphere matter, and because of the Listening we know that we matter.

Client Served

Rating: 5

The listening is amazing! They have great venues and bring in inspiring poets as well as allow creative expression for everyone. I’ve fully enjoyed the events I’ve attended, always a welcoming environment. Nick George has done an incredible job and you can feel the authenticity from him and how much he really cares about what he’s doing.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

With me having the priveledge of knowing this awesome team personally I can see that they share a similar heart amongst each other. I’ve seen them pour countless hours into their community and create opportunities to express art for so many including myself!