Foundation donates millions to help water crisis recovery - WNEM TV 5

Foundation donates millions to help water crisis recovery

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)
FLINT, MI (WNEM) -

Flint residents are working to move the water crisis recovery efforts along and one charity is leading by example.

"In addition to the infrastructure replacements, there's also things like affordable housing, education, early childhood, economic recovery and all of these different issues that are plaguing the city of Flint and need help in the recovery effort," said Ridgway White, president of the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation.

While people like Gov. Rick Snyder and Flint Mayor Karen Weaver are the bigger names when it comes to the water crisis, White and the Mott Foundation have arguably been the most crucial to the recovery effort.

"This last summer was our 90th anniversary of the Mott Foundation and we're going to be here in the future," White said.

The foundation provided an initial grant of $4 million to allow Flint to switch back to Detroit waiter, which started the healing process. Last week Virginia Tech researchers said Flint's lead levels are comparable to other cities.

The Mott Foundation has committed up to $100 million to help the community heal from the water crisis and they said about 10 other foundations have committed up to $25 million.

A main part of their focus now will be on other issues plaguing the city like improving K-12 education.

"After school programs, community education. So really focusing on ensuring that the schools are a place and a resource for people in light of this crisis," White said.

White said the foundation feels compelled to drive the message home that improvements to Flint's water quality is only a first step on a long road to recovery. He said additional tax incentives to encourage companies to create jobs in Flint could go a long way.

"I think that'd be huge because job creation is, at the end of the day, the best path out of this crisis," White said.

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