The Wesleyan Church World Headquarters, Indianapolis, Indiana
The Flint, Michigan, water crisis has been widely reported in the media, and represents a serious, ongoing health concern for thousands of people who still do not have access to safe, uncontaminated water in their homes.
The Wesleyan Church denomination has churches in Flint and throughout East Michigan that are serving as front line workers to help people who have become victims of this crisis. The Flint Grassroots Initiative (FGI) is the organization which has been formed to receive financial contributions, donations in kind, volunteer workers, and coordinate their use to help as many people as possible who have been affected by the crisis. The FGI is particularly targeting people who because of being poor, undocumented, homeless, elderly, or otherwise marginalized, are being underserved by government or large agency distributions.
- The Flint Grassroots Initiative is the Wesleyan Church denomination's official response to the Flint water crisis, and therefore it is harnessing financial contributions and volunteer workers from across the denomination in North America to serve the marginalized in Flint.
- "Poured Out" is a disaster relief organization which has served as a key Wesleyan responder in multiple recent disasters. Poured Out is part of the Flint Grassroots Initiative.
- East Michigan CCDA (Christian Community Development Association) is serving as the fiduciary arm of the Flint Grassroots Initiative. This Wesleyan organization has been registered with the state of Michigan for seven years and is providing accountability and reporting for all contributions on behalf of the FGI.
Because the Flint Grassroots Initiative has developed a strategic, comprehensive plan to meet the needs of victims of the crisis, it has attracted the attention of other partners who are joining in their efforts. Other denominations, relief organizations, government agencies, and even businesses are finding the FGI to be an effective vehicle to harness resources and help people that are most in need of help.
The Flint Grassroots Initiative is carrying out responses in the following areas:
- Massive water distributions, not only at centers, but directly to homes.
- New faucet and filter installation.
- Hygiene, including shower and laundry trailers at centers.
- Physical and mental health care, staffed by medical professionals at a mobile clinic.
- Nutrition: free food distributions including fresh fruits and vegetables
- Information and education. Many of the marginalized are not in the mainstream of information.
- Spanish language volunteers, literature, and information flow.
- Job training and assistance.
- Reconciliation. Rebuilding trust between groups and across the city.