As the Flint water crisis continues to impact the lives of residents of the Michigan city, entertainer Jaden Smith and a local church, First Trinity Missionary Baptist, will partner up to bring clean water to those in need.
The Associated Press reports the 20-year-old's foundation, JUST goods company, teamed with the church to design "The Water Box," a mobile water filtration system that cleanses water of harmful substances and was deployed Friday.
Since 2014, Flint residents have battled state and local governments over their right to have clean, drinkable water.
Contaminated and corrosive water pipes containing lead and rust has led to Legionnaires' disease outbreaks and the deaths of residents.
Households routinely relied on bottled water to do everyday tasks such as cook and clean. While residents suffer, well over a dozen state and local officials are amid ongoing investigations. About 15 people have yet to be convicted.
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First Trinity Missionary Baptist and Smith's foundation reportedly worked a year to make the filtration system a reality. It can create a 5-gallon container with clean water in about 30 seconds, MLive reports.
Spokesperson Catrina Tillman told the local outlet how it works. According to her, the filtration system can be hooked up to a hose and used instantly.
“Essentially you could hook it up to the hose on the side of your house and it will filtrate that water,” said Tillman. “This water box will help us further our reach in regard to servicing residents with clean water.”
The church spearheaded a water bottle initiative that began in 2016, working with another Flint-based organization, Black Millennials of Flint, to distribute clean water to residents.
Every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 10 a.m. to noon, residents line up to receive distributed water. In a few years, the church distributed 5 million bottles, but due to dwindling donations, there needed to be a change.
“We’ve been servicing our community on a weekly basis for the past three years, come rain, snow or sunshine we are giving out water,” Tillman told MLive. "In the beginning, we were doing five days a week but then we had to go down to three days a week because our donations have dwindled down.”
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