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All About Water Meeting

Posted on February 15, 2017

If there’s one thing people in Flint and Detroit have in common, it’s passion.

On February 1st, I had the honor of meeting with over 90 dedicated activists, lawyers, community organizers, funders, and leaders – all of whom share a deep desire to improve the quality and accessibility of water in their communities.

The meeting, called “All About Water”, was an illustration of Freshwater Future’s ethos that collaboration, citizen knowledge and community connection are critical to protecting our water resources.

The day was both enlightening and educational – it allowed for relationship-building and professional development amongst local activists and speakers who demonstrated a deep level of expertise and understanding.  There was a strong desire to learn from all those who attended, paired with an urgency to get to action and solutions.  We hoped to provide a deeper, more meaningful relationship with communities and I think everyone walked away energized with an elevated sense of importance of local activism and the need to include “health” in our policy decisions.

This is clearly a work in progress, but our goal is to ensure that water and environmental efforts are community centered, and that leadership roles are deliberately created for the local and underrepresented communities.  In my role with Freshwater Future, I will work with other NGO’s to host a series of roundtable conversations and opportunities for information sharing through 2017.  These efforts will vary in size, target audiences, invited participants, topics, and locations throughout southeastern Michigan.  Each convening will include approaches and practices that promote learning, information-sharing, and relationship-building.

For more information on our work and how you can get involved, please reach out to me at hilliard@freshwaterfuture.org

Hilliard Hampton
Freshwater Future
Associate Director of Urban Partnerships

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Images courtesy of Steven Huyser-Honig,
West Grand Boulevard Collaborative, & Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve.