How you can help people in Flint during the water crisis

Jan 13, 2016

We recently got this question on Twitter: 

Chelsea's not the only one asking- so we've started to put together a list of ways that individuals can help in Flint.

A host of community organizations and individuals have created funds to contribute to-- from donating bottled water to helping create better access to public health aid. 

Here are several ways you can help contribute:

The Flint Child Health & Development Fund

On Monday, the Community Foundation of Greater Flint and several other partners joined forces to launch a collaborative fund to support Flint children with the aim of bettering health outcomes for those affected by the contaminated water.

Michigan Radio’s Virginia Gordon talked to the Foundation's president on Tuesday:

“Anybody from any place who wants to make a difference and help address both the immediate and long term needs, there is a place for them to give,” said Kathi Horton, President of the Foundation.

Community members and representatives from Hurley Children’s Hospital, Mott Children’s Health Center, Flint Health Coalition, and the United Way of Genesee County have joined the foundation in this effort.

“The ultimate goal is to provide long-term funding for our children around public health concerns,” said Jamie-Lee Venable, director of Community Impact at the United Way of Genesee County.

The United Way previously promoted another fund, launched in September, to support immediate needs for the city. Venable said this fund raised around $50,000 for filters systems, replacement filters, and bottled water for residents. Donations they are receiving now are going to the Flint Child Health & Development Fund.

Flint Community Schools

In September, Flint Community Schools required students to bring bottled water to drink and used bottled water to cook meals.

“We are seeking donations of bottled water at all of our schools,” Bilal Tawwab, Superintendent of Flint public schools, wrote in a press release at the time.

To coordinate bottled water donations, call 810-760-1310. To donate money, you can call school district’s finance at 810-767-6030.

Catholic Charities of Genesee and Shiawassee Counties

The Catholic Charities is collecting donations at its Center for Hope Community Closet, located at 517 E. Fifth Ave. in Flint. Donations can include gallons of water, water filter and replacement kits, as well as cash or checks.

All donations will be accepted at this location on Monday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

To donate money, mail a check to 901 Chippewa St., Flint, MI 48503 with "water relief" mentioned on the memo line of the donation.

Help For Flint 

HelpForFlint.com has aggregated websites and opportunities for coordinated donations and volunteer opportunities in the Flint area. Flint residents can also use the website to search for water resource and filter sites. 

For all those looking to volunteer and assist in Flint's response efforts, the HelpForFlint.com website provides a online sign-up to the Flint Water Response Team

Additionally, HelpForFlint.com provides the information necessary for donating to the American Red Cross efforts in the Flint water crisis. 

Do you know any other ways to donate? Please comment below.

*This post was updated on January 26, 2016.

- Jennifer Calfas, Paula Friedrich, Amelia Zak, Michigan Radio Newsroom