When Front Porch Ethics Service embarked on the journey of embedding our values deep within the fabric of our organization, little did we know that it would transform into a vibrant odyssey of creativity, inspiration and community bonding. As the vice president of Ethics and Leadership Development, I would whisper under my breath, “If you build it, they will come,” igniting the flames of what was to become Front Porch’s inaugural “Embracing Our Values Summer Art Fest.”
This year, our mission was crystal clear: to weave our newly minted values into the very essence of Front Porch. With the Ethics Service serving as the compass, we set sail.
At the heart of our endeavor was our staff. Whether working at communities, CARING Housing Ministries, Community Services or Support Services, they were our artists in residence, painting, crocheting, sculpting, drawing, producing and building with sparkling flames of inspiration and showering encouragement on one another like confetti across our organization.
And then, like magic, creativity began to dance through the corridors. Submissions trickled in, shy at first, but growing bolder by the day. Colleagues would catch my eye in the hallway, their faces alight with the spark of creation, whispering, “I’ve got something brewing,” or “I’m sculpting my thoughts into art,” and “I’ve found the perfect way to weave our values into my piece.”
Our canvas was limitless, and so were the submissions. From paintings and photographs to graphic art and sketches, the variety was endless. Artists crafted jewelry, spun yarns into crochet, pieced together patchwork, collaged memories, fashioned handbags, twisted wire art, baked bread art, created videos, wrote poetry, and penned prose — all bursting with connections to our values.
Jessica McCracken, the director inspiring our Community Services program Creative Spark, remarked with a twinkle in her eye, ” It warms my heart to see our values come to life in such creative and profound ways.”
This was no ordinary art contest. The challenge was Herculean: create some form of art that encapsulates the essence of one or all six of our values: Connect, Build Trust, Collaborate, Lead Responsibly, Inspire Creativity, and Embrace Change.
Our 29 judges, members from our regional Ethics Committees and Ethics Board, found themselves in an art odyssey, their task to crown the victors based on creativity, values depiction, and the expression of embracing our values.
The celebration of our values and our in-house artists continues to resonate through the halls of Front Porch. Ethics advocates throughout are planning celebratory events with staff and residents alike. Our Board members, too, have been swept away by the wave of creativity, witnessing firsthand the tangible connection to our values at their recent board meeting.
With a heart swelling with gratitude and pride, I stand in awe of the 51 diverse submissions, crafted by our talented staff. Each piece is a love letter, a heartfelt ode to our values, showcasing the strength, diversity, and creativity of our incredible Front Porch family. Thank you!
— Lauren Moulton-Beaudry
Vice President, Ethics and Leadership Development