It’s crawfish season, so you know what that means…crawfish boils, picnics and day parties. Many Greek organizations pride themselves on being of service to their community and spearheading philanthropic events. Several members of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. and Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. decided to merge the love of crawfish down south with some southern hospitality of giving back. The aforementioned organizations will be hosting the Houston 1911 Kookowt on May 21st from 2-8PM at Bayou Parkland, 6532 Almeda Road, Houston, TX 77021. With a record attendance of 200 individuals last year, the event organizers decided to put the proceeds to charitable use for the residents of Flint, Michigan.
When you plant seeds and give back to others, someone will bless in you in a time of need. I want the community in Flint, Michigan to know that Texas still cares! – Dewan Clayborn, Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc.
For those who aren’t familiar with the travesty that has affected Flint, Michigan and many other urban cities, this city was devastated by the infiltration of toxic water. Although media coverage has died down, as always, the epidemic still exists for the city and its residents. Here are some quick facts about the Flint, Michigan water crisis:
- Due to the economic decline following the downsize of the nation’s largest General Motors plant, the city’s economy began to die in the early 80’s
- 2011: Michigan took over Flint’s finances after the city had over $25 in deficit
- 2014: The city switched water sources to make up for the water fund shortfall. The city has been in two-year transition while the connecting pipeline from Flint to Lake Huron was being constructed
- During this transition, the city’s water supply was the Flint River
Although the effects of using this known toxic water supply were known early on, the out-lash came later. The city had once used the Flint River as the water supply back in 1967 but shortly stopped using the river after it was revealed to be of poor quality with known toxins, oils, and fecal bacteria. Fast forward to 2014 and the city found themselves in the same position. What began as a boil water advisory for the west side of Flint in August of 2014 turned into a water crisis at the beginning of this year. After several boil advisories in 2014, General Motors stopped using the city’s water because of the concerns at hand. 2015 was filled with more notices from the city about the poor water quality and town hall meetings where residents presented jugs filled with discolored water. As early as February 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) declared the water supply to have levels of lead in the water at the home of a resident in Flint. Lead levels as high as 397 ppb were found. (Source: CNN)
It does not stop here. The timeline is extensive and I found myself shocked at how long this issue had taken place before the media picked it up. The Flint water crisis was not declared a major crisis until January 16, 2016. Many events and outrage have transpired over the last few months since President Obama has declared a state of emergency. However, one fact remains the same, the citizens of Flint, Michigan are still without viable sources of non-toxic water. So, what are we going to do about it?
The opportunity to give a lending hand shows the character of a man that lives for the riches of life and not the riches of money-Oliver Lancelin, Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.
Proceeds for wristbands for the 1911 Kookowt will be donated to Elizer Apostolic Church in Flint, Michigan who is providing residents with clean water sources . Purchase your tickets here. For vendor opportunities please send inquiries to email@example.com.