Paying It Forward
Elanna Butler is a busy 16-year-old. She has been the captain for her Westview High School Cheer Squad for the last two years, is part of her school’s advanced choir, and is a dedicated student. Outside of school Elanna takes acting lessons, enjoys dancing, diving, surfing and skating. Although she has a full schedule Elanna remains a steadfast volunteer in her community and hopes her efforts will inspire others.
“I became involved with the Wolverine Youth Football and Cheer (WYFC) from being a cheerleader at Westview High School after learning they were in need of assistant coaches,” said Elanna, whose little sister cheers for WYFC. She continues to put her cheerleading skills to good use by volunteering with the San Dieguito Boys & Girls Club, where she has been coaching cheer (among other things) for the past four years. Elanna is a camp counselor at the Mission Bay Aquatic Center (where she is certified in sailing) and lends her time to two very important organizations: St. Vincent de Paul where she helps feed the homeless and Jewish Family Services where she is part of the Girls Give Back program. “We go to homeless shelters, feed those in need, and give presentations to teenage girls in teen homeless shelters,” she said of her work with Girls Give Back. For the past two years Elanna has been part of Westview High School’s Best Buddies program. “I learned about the Best Buddies program and instantly wanted to join,” explained Elanna.
“I contacted the group advisor, the board members interviewed me and I got paired with my buddy, Josh.”
Motivated, perhaps by her father Scott’s recovery from Leukemia in 2011, Elanna is also a volunteer with Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla. “Elanna’s daddy was one of 30 to walk out alive,” shared Donna, Elanna’s mother. Remarkably, during the time her father was ill Elanna still managed to keep straight As, be on the Principal’s cabinet, and was nominated to be a peer tutor.
Apart from the good example she sets for her three younger siblings, Shaina, Dustin and Dylan, Elanna hopes to be an inspiration to everyone in her community. “If I could grant one wish to the 92129 community it would be when someone does a good deed for you, instead of paying them back, pay it forward by doing a good deed for someone else,” she said. “Volunteer when able to – pay it forward and pass it on.”[box title=”At a Glance” color=”#ba5454″]
Name: Elanna Butler
Community: Rancho Peñasquitos
Volunteer Affiliations: San Dieguito Boys and Girls Club, Mission Bay Aquatics Center, Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla, Girls Give Back, Best Buddies, St. Vincent de Paul
School: Westview High School, Senior
Parents: Donna and Scott
Siblings: Sister – Shaina
Brothers – Dustin and Dylan
Pet: Dog – Roxy