Welcome to Give Ear! Thank you for joining us!

 

There are a few different elements of this project that I can’t wait to share with you and further explain the intent behind.

Again, if you are here, we are already so grateful that you are interested in what we have been dreaming about for more than two years now.

Give Ear is a combination of blogging, video, photography, art, the practice of listening, and people in the local community, all somehow intertwined to create this project.

We hope Give Ear will be a space for people to listen to and connect with stories of people with diverse backgrounds and life experiences. Our hope is that we will interact with people that have had vastly different experiences that have led them to where they are today. We hope you will join us in listening and hearing with deep intention of truly understanding them and their story. That is the definition of Give Ear: to hear, to listen with intention.

Give Ear is a community project so we are asking for your input and help.

Do you know a local world-changer that is eagerly waiting for their craft, passion, or idea to be celebrated and given a spotlight that it deserves? We want to hear from you.

Do you have a story or know someone with a story that's dying to be told? We would love to be the listening ear and give you that chance.


Tell your Story

This is the heartbeat of this dream. Our country and world are longing so unmistakably for a listening ear rather than an instant judgment or categorization. Our culture is so quick to label and place people, ideas, beliefs, and stories in boxes or on a hierarchy that we rarely see and connect with the humanity and the heart behind one’s personal journey. This is the space where we will seek to connect with and interview people from all socioeconomic backgrounds, ethnicities, occupations, orientations, and challenges, and listen with intent to hear, connect with, and validate their experiences in life. I have never sat down for a meal or conversation with a drug addict, former cult member, a homeless person, etc. (add more) with the intention of listening to their stories and trying to understand their plight. I have found we are so quick to label, judge, or categorize others… that we don’t give any space or time to actually listen to their hearts. I hope we do this here, and I thank in advance everybody brave enough to share their story with us. We want to hear you, as we seek to connect with people across the community we live in with stories different than our own. We hope this will ignite a culture of listening and truly engaging with one another above anything else. We want to try our best to step into your shoes. We want to hear from you.


Community Changers

Community Changers is an avenue for who we feel are local heroes, a space for people to get recognized who may never otherwise have this opportunity. This is where we will search for people who we feel are changing the community and the world through their gifts and their passions. One of our favorite quotes comes from poet, hip hop artist and social activist Jason Petty, otherwise known as Propaganda, “The presence of good art will unconsciously refine a community.” This is where we will take this idea to heart, and we believe this is happening all over the city of Columbus and the world. We are looking for local artists, businesses, musicians, community leaders and more to be showcased and celebrated so that more and more people can be blessed with their gifts and passions. We hope to elevate local heroes by showcasing their work or ideas and give exposure to their local community. We are seeking to connect with "Community Changers" of all talents, ideas, and backgrounds.


Blog

Our blog will contain stories and ideas that rally around the mission of Give Ear: to listen, to hear with intent. We will share raw stories with this in mind, in hopes of capturing the need for listen and see through the labels, beyond the categories... and to the heart. We are hoping to feature many different writers in our blog as well. If you are interested in writing a piece for Give Ear or know someone who is, please reach out to us!

The Storytellers

Through friendship, dialogue, and observations of the world around us, we have begun a journey of seeking to truly hear the hearts of others. Combining our passions of writing, videography, and design, we hope to tell the stories of people in our community. We hope to listen to, celebrate, and share the stories of others, and we hope this will change the community and the world.

What others are saying:

"These guys are three of the most attentive, compassionate, and curious people I know. My brother Chris has consistently been those things throughout his life, and even as a small kid he always suited up as a communicator and a peacemaker. Ever since meeting Zach and Andrew for the first time five/ish years ago, I have been struck by seeing those same qualities that I always adored in my brother growing up. In a politically polarized and often bleak-seeming world, I am given renewed hope that these three guys are endeavoring to pool their creative talents and establish a community-oriented platform focused on connection. Humans from all walks of life have valid experiences and worthy stories to tell. Give Ear will seek to illustrate the humanity in all of us."

Drew Williams, local musician: Deadwood Floats/ Fellow Hollow ---> http://deadwoodfloats.com/https://fellowhollow.bandcamp.com/

“In a world where most people are talking past each other, these guys are cultivating the sort of space that all of us long for…a safe place to be seen and heard as we really are.  I’m not sure there is any better starting point to bring more love into the world. I’m a big fan of Give Ear…especially because I trust the hearts of the guys behind it! They genuinely care about hearing people’s real perspectives on life and are passionate about changing the world for good.  I learn so much from hearing other people's stories and I’m guessing as you follow along with Give Ear, you will too.”

Jeff Blackburn, director: Fearless Questions, Inc. ---> http://fearlessquestions.org/

"This is a GORGEOUS website and a terrific idea! I can’t wait until these guys start sharing more of this—it’s something I so agree with and believe in. Three people with complementary talents... I love everything this stands for!”

- John Montesi, Freelance writer, world-traveler, father to everyone's favorite dog, Hank ---> https://johntesi.com/


CHRIS WILLIAMS

Chris is a 2nd grade Special Ed. Teacher living in Columbus, Ohio. He scares his loved ones with his amount of coffee intake, loves his wife like crazy, and wishes his cat's vet visits were cheaper. He has a tight-knit family with as consistent of a GroupMe chat as they come. Many would say he's a walking "dad joke." He is passionate about writing and putt putt golf. Chris would love to see the social media platform become a quieter, more engaged space of listening and sharing ideas rather than wanting to be first or "right." This is what led him to create Give Ear.

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ZACH GIBSON

Zach is a media designer living in Columbus, Ohio. He has the most epic night-terrors known to man and has the best childhood stories you've ever heard. It is safe to say he spent more time playing computer games in his bathtub as a kid than anybody reading this. He has a deep and loyal love for his big family. He is passionate about storytelling and capturing raw moments through video and photographs. He shoots weddings year-round and creates media for a local jewelry store. Zach would love to see people experience freedom in their expression and truly be heard. This is what led him to create Give Ear.

ANDREW SIDERS

Andrew is a jack of all trades. He could very well be living in Australia right now and nobody would be surprised. At the same time, he is an incredible, loyal friend. He might have the best smile in the world. Every mother and grandmother loves him as if he's their own. He currently works about six jobs while going to school. He is passionate about landscape design, running at odd hours, and journaling. Andrew (or Andre, or Burt) would love to see people get in touch with their hearts and to ask tough questions about what they are really feeling/how they are doing. This is what led him to create Give Ear.