Virtual Volunteer-Led Event Brought UNITE For a Session of Painting

June 28, 2020

It has been such an amazing opportunity to witness UNICEF USA’s countless efforts to spread positivity during this difficult time. As the community engagement intern in the Houston office, I’ve been introduced to various UNICEF USA initiatives that have had a lasting impact on individuals and communities. One of the initiatives that I’ve had the pleasure of being a part of is #CreateForUNICEF 

#CreateForUNICEF offers a way for individuals to channel their energy positively by using creativity to produce something and dedicate it to young people in the world. This platform has not only inspired me to explore creativity in my everyday life, but it has also allowed me to be a part of various events that bring individuals together virtually.

On June 28th, the UNICEF USA Houston office organized and hosted Paint With Rifaa, an interactive painting session for #CreateForUNICEF. This virtual event is a part of the youth creative expression series, and offered UNICEF supporters a reflective space to channel their creativity through the art of painting. UNICEF Council Member, Rifaa Tajani, volunteered her time and talent to lead the session as well as guide participants in a step-by-step process. With paintbrushes and supplies ready, participants followed along as Rifaa taught us how to paint a mountain and cherry blossom landscape. She shared various techniques and tips, as we painted shining ombré skies, bold mountains, and even lively cherry blossoms using Q-tips!

It was truly an honor to connect with UNICEF supporters and witness how this session brought everyone together. Thirty-two participants from all ages and various locations joined together to paint messages of hope and peace. The session was filled with bright colors and smiles, as attendees held their paintings up to display their progress throughout the session. It was truly inspiring to see everyone’s final product, as each painting was beautiful and unique.

Before the session wrapped up, I had the opportunity to highlight some #CreateForUNICEF posts and share my own post with attendees. In sharing these posts and their messages, we hope participants will reflect what their painting meant to them and dedicate their work towards the collection of art in #CreateForUNICEF.

I want to give a huge thank you to everyone who participated in Paint with Rifaa and made it a success. Special thank you to Rifaa for leading this session, our deepest gratitude goes to her for her creativity and enthusiasm. Another big thank you to Rania and the Levant Foundation for continuing to support UNICEF USA Houston and the #CreateForUNICEF campaign. Everyone who participated made this session so memorable and exciting, which is one of the many reasons I am grateful to be a part of UNICEF USA.

UNICEF UNITE Houston has always been creative and now it is the time to show it to everyone! If you are willing to learn more about the UNICEF USA Houston UNITE or to join the team, please contact the Olivera Jankovska. Community Engagement Associate for the Southwest Region at ojankovska@unicefusa.org or the Regional Office at houston@unicefunite.org 

Banner photo submitted by Samridhi Vashisth towards the #CreateForUNICEF initiative. Congratulations for making it as the frontpage photo of this blog!