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The Great Thanksgiving Listen


With American Thanksgiving here, we at The Rockefeller Foundation are grateful for many things: brilliant and hardworking colleagues, the opportunity to work alongside visionary grantees and partners, and the people whose innovation and resilience inspire us and challenge us every day to work towards even greater impact.

All year long, we work to tell the stories of all of these as a means of raising greater awareness to the world’s most pressing challenges – and solutions to  them. This led us to invest in last year’s report on Digital Storytelling for Social Impact, and, in the wake of Hurricane Sandy  to support the documentary “This Time Next Year.” And earlier this year, we worked with StoryCorps to produce a suite of stories highlighting some of the challenges we’re working to address, including building urban resilience, fixing the U.S. youth employment crisis, and defining what makes a good job.

This wasn’t our first engagement with StoryCorps who work to provide people across America with the opportunity to record, share and preserve the stories of  their lives.– Indeed, The Rockefeller Foundation was  StoryCorps’  first funder. But it was a reminder to us that the most powerful means of storytelling is still the oral tradition of conversation between two people – whether it’s captured in one of StoryCorps recording sessions, or over the Thanksgiving dinner table.

Which is why we are thrilled to support the perfect marriage of both through “The Great Thanksgiving Listen,” StoryCorp’s initiative to equip students across the country to preserve the voices and stories of an older generation. The Thanksgiving weekend is a perfect time to do so and all  that is needed is a smartphone, the StoryCorps mobile app, and an older relative or friend to interview.

So whether you need something other than a sing-along to Adele to keep the peace at the dinner table, or you’re looking for a unique project for the whole family — learn more about the project and then download the app. Thousands of  great stories can start with #TheGreatListen – we hope you’ll be a part of it.

From all of us at The Rockefeller Foundation, have a wonderful holiday.

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