FLINT, MI (March 30, 2016) — A local news station featured the Flint Grassroots Initiative (FGI) in a story about the efforts to help some of the most marginalized city residents as they struggle through the ongoing water crisis.
Several Covenant congregations, the Great Lakes Conference, Covenant World Relief, and the Love Mercy Do Justice ministry priority have partnered with other local churches and organizations to create FGI. The initiative provides resources such as water, filters, fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as lead blood-level testing every second and fourth Friday at partner Joy Tabernacle.
Covenant congregations in Michigan that helped last Friday were Faith Covenant Church in Farmington Hills, Life Church Canton, and Thornapple Covenant Church in Grand Rapids. New Harvest Christian Church, a Covenant congregation in Toledo, Ohio, brought its Food for Thought mobile food pantry.
The initiative is seeking to meet the needs of residents who don’t have transportation to get resources, don’t have U.S. government identification, don’t have a settled address to give authorities, or are non-English speakers. They are people that Jody Eidnes, Great Lakes Conference administrator, has said are falling through the cracks.
“FEMA is missing in this scenario, and it’s disturbing as a pastor,” said Robert McCathern, FGI director and pastor of Joy Tabernacle.
“We have a long-term commitment,” McCathern told the ABC affiliate WJRT. “When the hype is gone people still need help. It’s getting ready to get hot and the consumption of water will grow.”
Other FGI partners include the Wesleyan Church and several regional Eastern Michigan Christian Community Development Associations.
To contribute to the response go to the LMDJ online giving page.