The Flint, Michigan water crisis has been going on for what feels like forever. It all started in April of 2014 when the water supply switch was meant to be temporary and cost-efficient. As a matter of fact, it all went down the drain from there (no pun intended). The city-wide water deficiency of purified water has been an issue for five years now, and no one has really thought twice about it since then. Until artist, singer/songwriter and actor, Jaden Smith, decided to make a change to the stagnant progress of the water supply.
The spirited 20-year-old comes from a family of many gifted talents, it’s no surprise he has taken the extra mile to start a ripple for the wave of change in the Michigan waters. It was announced in early March that Smith had partnered up with The First Trinity Baptist Church to ensure that his new eco-friendly company, JUST Water could distribute his new mobile water treatment system. In 2018, after years of a state program focused on giving out donated water bottles to residents, it was abruptly ended by former Michigan governor, Rick Snyder. Snyder claimed that the water was safe to drink, but residents still did not believe it. The tension between the Michigan locals and government officials has caused an uproar in the market to purchase or receive water bottles. Since then, newly appointed governor, Gretchen Whitmer, has made progress to reinstate the program to make certain the locals receive the clean water they need. While the restoration of the policy is still undergoing, Smith has stepped in with the help of The First Trinity Baptist Church to showcase his new filtration system.
Karen Weaver, Mayor of Michigan, spoke out on her gratitude she has for the efforts Jaden and his parents (Will & Jada Pinkett Smith) have contributed for the launch of his company. Besides the fancy water bottles, Jaden also created a filter system called “The Water Box,” which is a literal portable box that has the ability to strain out the contaminated lead and leave consumers with clean, purified water. Smith’s company, JUST Water, is also teaming up with other organizations like Rethink H2O and Black Millennials for Flint, to help try to make the water clean as a more permanent solution.
Jaden and JUST Water’s addition to the progressing water problem in Michigan is meant to be used as a backbone for the community instead of a long-term solution. Hopefully, the coverage that this environmental change Smith is undergoing will catch the attention of many other influencers and public officials to save the water supply of Flint for good.