LISC National

Love Thy Neighborhood Awards

The spread of COVID-19 in the US continues to intensify, as experts predicted. We are first and foremost concerned with the health and safety of our partners and the communities we serve. 

Out of an abundance of caution and a desire to safeguard our collective health, we will be postponing the April 16th Love Thy Neighborhood Awards until September 10, 2020. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

We will continue to stay in touch as we work on logistics regarding the postponement of this event. 


Recognizing community game changers in the Indy region by celebrating the people and places that have made outstanding progress in developing their neighborhoods as desirable places to live, work, learn, play, and stay.

The LOVE Thy Neighborhood Awards were created in 2017 by LISC Indianapolis and partners to encourage the transformation of neighborhoods throughout the Indy region into authentic and places, profoundly attractive and livable for both residents and visitors. Each year, 12 groups or projects are recognized with five winning unrestricted cash prizes.

In each category, three finalists (announced before the event) will be highlighted through short videos produced by the event organizers. The fifth award will be the LOVE award, which will be voted on and announced at the event. Winners of each category will receive $2500 cash award.

Buy Your Tickets for the April 16 Gala

The Awards will take place on Thursday, September 10 at the Indiana War Memorial.The event will start at 5 p.m. with a cocktail reception featuring heavy hors d'oeuvres and drinks provided by local entrepreneurs who have been impacted by LISC's small business support. This will be followed with attendees moving into the beautiful auditorium space for the awards ceremony.

This annual event will be glamorous, yet rooted in the authentic cultures of area neighborhoods. Tickets for this event are only $25 per person. Tickets can be purchased here:

Livability Award

Recognizes an organization, individual, initiative or project with a long-standing commitment to healthy communities. Organizations that have created communities in which residents have daily access to art, nature, recreation and beauty.

2020 Livability Finalists:

Growing Places Indy

1 in 6 people in Indianapolis face food insecurity - including children. Growing Places Indy works year-round to provide increased access to fresh local food. The organization is focused on empowering people to cultivate personal, family and community wellness through urban agriculture, access to fresh local food, and mind-body education.  Learn more!

A Rising Tide / Indy Convergence

A Rising Tide is a Near West neighborhood-based initiative focused on inviting neighbors to enjoy an untapped community resource, the White River. A Rising Tide transformed the shores of the Indianapolis White River into a "pop-up theater and arts district" while creating a long-term economic benefit for Near West residents. This project is supported by Reconnecting to Our WaterwaysLearn more!

A Town Center, Anderson Ind.

A Town Center is a community art center and an artist cooperative in Anderson. The center offers free studio space for artists in return for their participation in A Town Center's events and programming, as well as other community engagement projects. Learn more!

Past Winners: 

Opportunity Award

Recognizes an outstanding organization, individual, initiative or project with a focus on building human capital, supporting existing businesses and redeveloping commercial property for viable new businesses, which requires the deployment of capital and technical support to bolster community entrepreneurs.

2020 Opportunity Finalists:

201 Studios

201 Studios is an exciting redevelopment of a 100-year-old factory on the near East side. The transformed 60,000 square foot building is now small to medium art and maker space studios hosting an eclectic group of talented artist and makers including painters, printmakers, woodworkers and more. Learn more!

GRoE, Inc. / Open Bite Night

GRoE is a non-profit leading the effort to feed children in the MLK neighborhood. In addition to providing afterschool snack packs, school supplies and coat drives, GRoE brings the community together through events such as the wildly successful Open Bite Night, which serves as a platform for emerging entrepreneurs, artists and vendors to reach a wide audience, network and expand their business while also providing a multi-faceted event for community members to enjoy. Learn more!

ReEntry Entrepreneurship Development Initiative (REDi)

REDi utilizes, and expands upon, Business Ownership Initiative's tools, workshops, and coaching and lending resources to help incarcerated and formerly-incarcerated individuals learn about business ownership and hopefully launch their own small business. REDi has provided more than 11,000 hours of training and coaching to more than 1,000 participants since launching in 2016. As well as helping launch 17 businesses and providing four microloans.  Read more!

Past Winners:

Vitality Award

Recognizes an organization, individual, initiative or project that has helped to retain and attract residents to under-populated communities in a way that diversifies household income levels that leads to enhanced density and prosperity of these communities and the city.

2020 Vitality Finalists:

Artist & Public Life Housing Residency / Big Car Collaborative

The Artist & Public Life Residency offers perpetual affordable artist housing linked with community support in the Bean Creek/Garfield Park neighborhoods. The initiative provides artists enjoyable and equitable home ownership while they work - in part - to collaborate with other neighbors and boost the culture, creativity, diversity, livability, safety, health, and economy of the local and greater community. Learn More!

Near East Quality of Life Plan

Just outside the heart of downtown Indianapolis, 20 different neighborhoods with 40,000 residents form a community possessing the spirit and know how to make the Near Eastside a great place to live. Through grassroots leadership, embracing diversity and preserving culture, neighbors are encouraged to engage in educational opportunities, promote business growth within the area economy, and support affordable and attractive housing for all residents. Learn More!

Parker Place Senior Apartments / Englewood CDC

Soon after Parker Place Senior Apartments opened its doors in April 2019, its 39 units were full, serving seniors from vulnerable populations. This project addresses the need for affordable housing while bringing state-of-the-art facilities to the Near Eastside. Nine of the units are dedicated for individuals coming out of homelessness via the Continuum of Care.

Learn More!

Past Winners:

Education Award

Recognizes an organization, individual, initiative or project that has contributed significantly to the enhancement of the learning opportunities in communities. Communities that offer a rich array of educational opportunities to their residents from cradle to career to ensure that all children in these areas will have access to quality schools, and that adults will have opportunities to improve their employment skills.

2020 Education Finalists


RecycleForce is a social enterprise delivering comprehensive and innovative recycling services in support of workforce training, development and job placement for formerly incarcerated men and women transitioning back to society. Using the revenue generated by its recycling business, they help formerly incarcerated individuals rebuild their lives by providing gainful employment and comprehensive social services. Learn more!

Oaks Academy

The Oaks Academy provides a rich classical education to Pre-K through 8th-grade students in Indianapolis. Its successful and unique school model meets several community needs including quality school options in disinvested neighborhoods, purposefully diverse environments and community partnership to maintain and improve important neighborhood assets. Over the last 20 years, that mission has grown from one school of 53 students to three schools of 940 students. Learn more!

Earth Charter Indiana

The non-profit's mission is to connect the dots of our state's biggest challenges -- poverty, racism, and a lack of democratic transparency -- within the context of the climate crisis. The program seeks to combine science with civics to achieve meaningful progress on climate impacts. By empowering youth at the juncture of civics and climate, they address two crises: climate and civic engagement, while in the process, create a more resilient community. Learn more! 

Past Winners:

People’s Choice Award

The People’s Choice Award will be selected by a majority vote of those present at the awards gala. It will be selected from among the 12 finalists of the LOVE categories and the winner will receive $2500.

Past Winners:


Megan Bulla, Communications Officer