By Jessica Lyons
Todd, North Carolina has a longstanding history of caring for its community through service and leadership. The Rev. Brandon Wrencher plans to embody that community care through an initiative he’s leading called the Todd Listening Project, which will debut at a Jan. 30 press conference at Blackburn’s Chapel UMC in Todd.
The press conference is set to begin at 4 p.m., with 70 total available spaces for those interested in attending. To ensure a space, the public can RSVP to [email protected].
Wrencher and other community leaders are planning to speak at the event to inspire people from the community to express their needs and ideas to improve the community. The event will be catered by F.A.R.M. Café from Boone.
“So much at the core of this community is relationships and promoting neighborliness in Todd,” Wrencher said. “Projects and ideas will come out of this, as well, but it’s about listening to our community.”
Over 100 invitations were sent out to local and community partners as a broad invitation to attend the event and discover more about the residents of Todd. The goal is to bring a younger energy back to Todd, something that is often lacking due to economic and migration challenges that the area has faced.
Wrencher said one of his goals is to help people tell their stories, and he hopes a visual project will be created from the responses collected from TLP. Interns from Appalachian State University will be welcome to help complete the project once a plan has been formed. He hopes to be able to create a space where visual profiles can be built from the stories, but the final project will be decided off of the content TLP receives.
Through TLP, Wrencher hopes to provide an outlet for community members to express their needs and create an open path of communication.
In the event of inclement weather, the event will be rescheduled for Feb. 13 with the same time schedule. More information on TLP and the church, also known as the Blackburn House can be found on their website.