Expanding Elan’s Impact in the Community

Before I was on the Elan staff, I had heard about their community events and how powerful and inspiring they had been. When the opportunity for Elan to be at Color Me Kona came around, I knew I wanted to be a part of that team. Color Me Kona is a festival that fundraises the Kid’s Mural Project, which aims to uplift and empower underprivileged youth around the city. It includes art instillations, vendors, live performances, interactive mural painting, and an overall really inspiring environment. Elan was a part of the vendors at Color Me Kona, and it was more rewarding than I ever thought it would be.

Being a part of the Elan staff already meant a lot to me, but this experience changed my view on the impact the Elan staff can have on the community. We all made a big effort to have an interactive and eye catching booth that would draw people in and it worked. We had a wide range of people come up and learn about what Elan is and I think the most inspiring part of it all was seeing how impressed people were when they learned about our magazine. Not only are we making an impact on those around us in the community, but I think we are inspiring them as well.

This event inspired me a lot as an artist. The vendors that we were surrounded with were so creative. The art that decorated the park was amazing as well, the whole environment was inspiring in itself. The artist that were there cared about what they were creating and it was obvious. It was really special to be around all those artists and when the event was over I became even more excited about future Elan events that I can be a part of. It really takes being at an event to understand how impactful Elan is and how important it is in this community. Events like Color Me Kona give us an opportunity to let people know we are here and we are engaged with the community.

The success of Color Me Kona gives me so much hope that we will make even more of a lasting impact at other events in the community in years to come. Without Elan I would never be able to experience events like Color Me Kona through the eyes of someone that is making an impact in the community. It prides me to be a part of a staff that is working to make Elan an even more important part of the community than it already is. My time on the Elan staff will be spent working hard to ensure we continue to spread our impact through the community with each event to come. For me, Color Me Kona is the start of my part in community engagement in Elan, and I’m excited to see what comes next.

Anna Howse, Junior Fiction/CNF Editor