NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Many Nashville homeowners would love to spruce up their homes, but they just can't afford it. That's why a youth minister at West End Church of Christ decided to do something about it.
He rallied teens from area churches to roll up their sleeves free of charge and formed Nashville Work Camp.
You have to put in a lot of time to be a Nashville Work Camp helper, but the teens who participated, like Carmen Schmittou, wouldn't have it any other way.
"It makes me very happy because this means so much to the homeowner to see her house pretty and stuff," Schmittou said.
The team of youngsters working on a home in East Nashville Thursday was one of 16 area church groups who volunteer for the program. They're painting homes for the less fortunate all across Music City.
Nashville Work Camp volunteers have been painting homes for 19 years. This year, the goal is to complete 23 homes in five days.
Randy Cornwell, a Nashville Work Camp board member, said they're hoping to show the foot prints of Jesus through the Nashville community.
"There are a lot of people in the Nashville area who cannot afford to have their home to be painted, so we thought this would be a good thing to do," said Cornwell.
The teen volunteers agree. In fact, they pay to work. Schmittou said they hand over $90 towards supplies.
"We are so blessed to have that money to be able to paint," she said. "Usually people would get paid to do this but instead the homeowner is getting it for free."
It gives homeowners a new sense of pride in their homes, and volunteers a good reason to put work before play.
"This is also helping me, too, because it’s teaching me more than going to Disney World would," said Schmittou.
Over the years, the group has painted hundreds of houses. If you would like your home to be considered for next year's painting project in June, all you have to do is call 615-690-4686.
A member of Nashville Work Camp will come out, hear your story and determine if you're eligible for assistance.