The Youth Action Council is a group of youth based out of the South Vancouver community. Our group focuses on youth leadership development and community youth event coordination. On the evening of June 6th we held our Neighbourhood Small Grants event. Paint the Night Away. Our main goal was to have community residents express or develop their creativity with the arts as they dined together.
Our goal was achieved as many of our guests were interested in painting and they learned a lot from each other. Painting was foreign to some but throughout the night, they actively participated, engaged in conversation, and had an enjoyable time. We saw some future artists that night! Everyone was deeply concentrated on their paintings and proudly took their amazing artwork home.
We rented a room and kitchen space at the South Vancouver Neighbourhood House for our event, and the night started with background music playing in the room as the guests trickled in. We had a turnout of around 30 guests; the group size allowed for a cozy feeling and everyone got along well with sufficient space for painting and dining.
Personal paint sets of a canvas, paints, palette, and brushes were provided to all guests. Throughout the event, everyone got to know each other better and learned to help each other out with their artwork. Though the event was open to all ages, it mostly attracted youth guests. Our participants came from diverse ethnic backgrounds: Chinese, Vietnamese, South East Asian, and Arabian.
We ordered Subway for dinner and light snacks and drinks were also provided. The guests enjoyed the food provided, and there was enough for everyone to be full by the end of the evening.
Some improvements we will keep in mind for similar future events will be lengthening our promotion period to outreach to more people. Also, we noticed that most of the guests were much more attracted to the painting aspect of the evening; next time we will plan out our floor plan more carefully so that our table setup will provide more space for painting and less for dining. We chose to host the event in the evening time to coincide with dinner, which was an important aspect. However, next time, we would also consider hosting the event at a different time of day to see if it will attract a different age range population.
Overall, Paint The Night Away went smoothly and everyone had a great time. Many things were learnt that night and laughter resounded around the room. The event was a success and we will be integrating art and creativity into future youth-led events.

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