UNTHSC volunteers demonstrate values in Cowtown Brush Up effort

The skies were overcast and the ground was soggy, but the spirits of the UNT Health Science Center volunteers were high and bright as they gathered last weekend to paint a house as part of the annual Cowtown Brush Up campaign.

"I wanted to help make a difference," said Wendy Landon, Senior Executive Assistant of Thomas Yorio, PhD, Provost and Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs.  "The Cowtown Brush Up project was just one of many ways we are living our values every day, and I feel blessed to be a part of it."

Cowtown Brush Up, sponsored annually by the city of Fort Worth and Trinity Habitat for Humanity, is a revitalization program designed to enhance the images of low-income Fort Worth neighborhoods. Since its inception in 1991, Brush Up volunteers have painted 2,300 homes across Fort Worth.

This year, the program was part of the Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter Work Project, which helps raise awareness of the critical need for simple, decent and affordable housing. The Carters participated in a kickoff ceremony on Saturday in downtown Fort Worth.

After the kickoff, more than 800 volunteers spread out to paint 40 Fort Worth homes.

Sustainability Coordinator Sandy Bauman led 14 UNTHSC volunteers in painting a modest frame house in southern Fort Worth.

She said many of the painters had never met or worked together before, but they came together as a team to get the job done quickly and efficiently.

More importantly, she said, the effort served as a real-life example of UNTHSC staff members embracing the values process recently undertaken by Fort Worth’s Health Science Center.

"The heart of the project is to serve others first by helping to revitalize a house and, in turn, a neighborhood. In addition, team members really collaborated together to achieve the end result," Bauman said.

UNTHSC recently has completed a grassroots effort to develop a set of values that will guide the institution and its employees in how they treat each other and the public they serve. Those values are Serve Others First, Integrity, Respect, Collaboration and Be Visionary.

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