flint water crisis by Joshua Eferighe March 6, 2019
While everyone and their auntie has been talking about which basketball player cheated on who, Jaden Smith has been plotting on a way to save Flint, Michigan.
If you didn’t know, Flint’s water supply was revealed to be contaminated with lead in 2014 and there have been protracted legal and political battles over the crisis ever since.
While there have been donations, proposed solutions, and even a little girl named ‘Little Miss Flint’ who has spearheaded awareness, the problem has still remained.
Now, Jaden is giving a stab at it.
On March 1, Jaden announced that his company Just Water is teaming up with local organizations like First Trinity Missionary Baptist Church to announce that they’ll be rolling out a mobile filtration system called “The Water Box” to remove lead and other poisons from the contaminated water in Flint.
First Trinity Missionary Baptist Church has provided 5 million bottles of water to the residents of Flint in the past but has recently witnessed a decline in donations. With Jaden’s partnership, they were able to replenish resources.
According to a press release, The Water Box produces 10 gallons of clean drinking water per minute and is tested each day with the team on the ground and every few weeks by an independent and certified laboratory.
“This has been one of the most rewarding and educational experiences for me personally,” Smith said in the statement.
“Working together with people in the community experiencing the problems and design(ing) something to help them has been a journey I will never forget. We are planning to deploy more water boxes in Flint and other communites facing similar challenges.”
Just Water is also partnering with other organizations like The Last Kilometer, Rethink H2O, Black Millennials for Flint, and 501CTHREE to help try to make the water clean for good.
This a continuation of the efforts Jaden and his dad made last year when they pledged to continue giving monthly to the city until lead levels in the public schools’ water are below the federal threshold.
You think this type of crisis would be at the forefront of local government officials minds, but at one point Flint’s Governor, Rick Snyder, declared the end to Flint’s free bottled water program on in 2018, claiming the water was officially clean.
Luckily, newly appointed Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer states that the program will be reinstated, as the problem of clean water is still very much an issue.
We played Two Truths and a Lie with Little Miss Flint. pic.twitter.com/tdaDGramtF
— AJ+ (@ajplus) December 9, 2016
The church will provide water from The Water Box on Thursdays from 11:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. to residents who bring their own containers. Residents will be able to fill any container of their choice with the clean water and the filtration device will be available through the church with set distribution times.
“We are committed to serving the community in which we worship in,” said Ezra Tillman, pastor of First Trinity Baptist church in a statement.
Jaden’s mom shared what one of the filtration systems looks like on Twitter. The attnetion and resources are there. Now, it’s just a matter of time.
.@officialjaden I really enjoyed our trip to Flint yesterday where I witnessed you unveil your first water filtration system to First Trinity Church. Your desire to innovate to help Flint have access to clean water makes me so proud. pic.twitter.com/nssKJQVaZw
— Jada Pinkett Smith (@jadapsmith) March 3, 2019