For the past few years, Growing Room Festival has developed a team of volunteers who are specifically focused on providing community care and are available to anyone at the festival. At any given event, there will be two Active Listeners in the room, readily identifiable by their glow stick adornments. Active Listeners play three main roles as part of this festival: holding space, providing resources, and acting as liaisons between organizers and participants. We are proud to have them on board to aid in the fundamental work of this festival.
Artistic communities often strive to give voice to very personal truths, which can sometimes be overwhelming and challenging to hear. As their first priority, Active Listeners are here to ensure that folks can access a friendly ear to help them navigate and hold space for difficult feelings that can arise in the midst of a powerful performance or workshop.
While our Active Listener team is community vetted and possesses a variety of skills, you may require support beyond what an Active Listener can provide. In their second role, each Active Listener carries with them a list of community resources, should someone require more comprehensive care. The community has likewise vetted this list, but should you have suggestions for further additions or revisions, we would appreciate hearing from you!
In fact, we generally appreciate any feedback you have about the festival, whether it be criticisms, suggestions for future improvements or even love letters. In the moments during the festival, however, our key organizers may not have the ability to field all of your very important comments. Our Active Listener team, in their third role, are here to be a go-between to ensure that all of your thoughts, feelings and ideas are given the attention they deserve. Please, tell us all the things – we want to hear from you!
As we continue on our journey to provide the community with an enriching and engaging experience, we are striving to do so in a way that uplifts and strengthens us all. Our Active Listener team is a core part of Growing Room and we are thankful for the work that they have done and continue to do. Feel free to thank an Active Listener, or any volunteer, for the kind gift of their valuable labour.
For more information about our Active Listeners, contact our Active Listener Coordinator, Dana Kagis at Dkagis@gmail.com