Program works to reduce effects of lead in Flint children - WNEM TV 5

Program works to reduce effects of lead in Flint children

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Source: WNEM Source: WNEM

The water crisis put Flint into the international spotlight when news broke the city's water system was poisoning its residents.

Since then city workers and government officials have been charged with negligence for covering up their mistakes.

Businesses have faced scrutiny for shoddy work and families are working hard to overcome it all.

The effects of lead poisoning can have a long lasting effect on a child's physical and mental development.

"It's just real sad that our city is going through this right now. It's real tragic," said Koretha Sanders, resident.

It has been a rough three years for Sanders. Right around the time the news broke of the tainted pipes, she also lost a newborn son that was just two days old.

"They couldn't determine if it was caused by lead or not, but he just had a short time on this earth. But they were never able to find out what caused it," Sanders said.

Sanders said she was devastated, but had to quickly pick herself back up. That's because she still had four other children to think about.

Each week she brings her children to the Genesee County CARD Early Head Start program, which provides education, home visits and nutritional support for kids 5 and younger.

"This is the time when we really want to instill hope in our families because we keep hearing about all the tragedies and devastation caused by the lead crisis. But we want families to know that there is still hope and we can provide all the resources to make them successful," said Kelli Webb, program director.

Webb said they work to reduce the effects of lead exposure and hopes they can keep getting the funding that makes expansion of the programs possible.

As for Sanders, she just hopes it will all be over soon.

"I really wish that everybody would be able to run clean water again and be able to drink and have their kids be happy and healthy," Sanders said.

The head start program is expanding, adding more classrooms and making room for more than 100 Flint children.

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