Local group preparing to help Flint before Christmas

local group is collecting water to send to residents in Flint, Michigan just in time for Christmas. (WISH Photo/Kevin Stinson)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A local group is collecting water to send to residents in Flint, Michigan, just in time for Christmas.

The water is an issue organizers admitted they thought was over.

But with the Christmas season upon us, they say want to make the holiday a little better for the families and children up there.

They’ve already collected 300 cases, but with your help they hope to do more.

“It [the water issue] doesn’t stop just because it’s not in the news, just because it’s not on your Facebook timeline, it’s still a problem, It’s still happening,” said Chelsea Johnson, the founder of Forward For Flint, the group organizing the water drive.

Years after lead-contaminated water and pipes were first detected, people there are still exposed, including 12,000 children. Lead poisoning in children can lead to developmental delays, seizures and even death.

“I’m a mom. I have a five-year-old and I just can’t imagine these kids without water,” said Johnson.

Johnson and Rasheed Nicholas are planning the water drive, and using a charity basketball game to make it happen.

“Bring water, bring toys, cause you can help somebody’s Christmas, you can make a kid smile,” said Nicholas, an organizer with the MGM Charity Game.

The game has been organized for the last six years. This year’s recipient are the people in Flint. The game will be held Friday night at 6 p.m. at Park Tudor School.

“It was a no-brainer, we thought it was fun, something good to do. I think it’s crazy that they’re still not having clean water.” said Nicholas.

They say local dance teams are competing with each other to see who can collect the most supplies.

In addition to water, they also need sanitary wipes and hand sanitizer.

“I didn’t know it was still an issue, I thought it was solved, I thought they had everything taken care of up there,” said Johnson.

They plan is to leave Indianapolis Saturday morning, so they need all those supplies by Friday night.

Water and supplies can be dropped off at the Too Much Dance Studio at 6800 East 30th Street.

Johnson can be contacted at ForwardForFlint@gmail.com.

Johnson said they’ll also pick up supplies from your house.