June July 2016
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Cher Donates 181,440 Bottles of Water to Flint, Michigan

Cher

Cher has made a much-needed donation to the people of Flint, Michigan.

The “Strong Enough” singer is giving 181,440 bottles of water to the city, whose water supply had been contaminated with lead.

After reading about Flint’s plight—more than 100,000 people have been consuming tainted water since 2014—Cher contacted her friend Brad Horwitz, an investor in the spring water company Icelandic Glacial. Horwitz connected Cher to the company’s chairman, Jon Olafsson, and communicated her wish to make the donation.

These bottles will begin arriving January 20 at the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan. From there, they will be sent to food banks and community centers for distribution to residents who live below the poverty line, a demographic that comprises about 40 percent of the city’s population. After use, the food banks will recycle the bottles and keep the money raised in the process.

“This a tragedy of staggering proportion and shocking that it’s happening in the middle of our country,” Cher stated. “I am so grateful that Icelandic Glacial has come on-board to help the city of Flint."  

"I cannot wait for the water to get there to help these people who have been poisoned," she added, "because the water they’ve been getting out of their taps has been polluted for so long and remains that way without the state or the federal government stepping in with any substantial plan to resolve this problem.”

According to the Detroit Free Press, the contamination began in 2014, when city officials, to make a cost-cutting move, switched the water supply from Lake Huron to the more polluted Flint River. The city failed to treat the water from its new source properly, which exposed children to lead and its related health problems.

Cher has also taken to social media to criticize the government and its leaders for the crisis in Flint. Early warning signs of the water’s contamination—residents complained of a strange taste and smell, and a doctor reported high levels of lead in children’s blood—were ignored by public officials. The singer took particular aim at Gov. Rick Snyder for inaction.

On Saturday, President Obama declared a federal emergency in the Michigan city, and has allocated $5 million in federal aid for assistance. In response, Cher tweeted her praises, as well as her support for Flint's mayor, Karen Weaver.

Tags: People, Cher
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