LARGO, Md. — At the Kentland Volunteer Fire Department in Largo, a garage is quickly filling up with cases upon cases of bottled water. The liquid is being collected to help the people of Flint, Michigan, who are living with tainted water.
It was a volunteer who came up with the idea to start the water drive, said Lt. Mark Morris with Prince George’s County Fire and EMS.
“She said that she wasn’t able to sleep at night, just knowing that pregnant women, children and the elderly may not have clean drinking water,” Morris said.
On Friday morning, the station only had a couple cases of water. Friday evening, Morris said their collection had gone up by more than 200 cases.
“We’ve just been here all day. We’ve had at least 10 cars and a big van bring all the waters over to the fire station,” said Kendal Ballentine, 17, a senior at Riverdale Baptist School, who spent the day bringing in water donations from her school to the fire station with her friend 18-year-old Tiera Lee.
The school is responsible for a majority of the donations. Lee said during a discussion on how to help the people of Flint, an administrator presented her with a flier for the water drive.
“I feel really good that we are helping them out,” Lee said.
Lee said they had a goal of 500 cases of water and put the call out to students to donate.
Hundreds of cases came in to the school but Lee said unfortunately they fell a few cases short of their goal.
“I’ve been hearing about this … the water condition in Flint, Michigan and it just broke by heart,” said Andrea Wray of Upper Marlboro, who donated two cases of water after work.
Morris said the fire department is pleased to be taking part in this effort to help the people of Flint.
“In the fire department, we’re here to help people in need and whether its local or up in Flint, Michigan or anywhere across the United State we’re more than willing to help,” Morris said.
Organizers hope to fill a big truck which will leave for Michigan on March 20.
Donations can be dropped off at the following stations between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. any day until March 20:
Branchville Volunteer Fire Company and Rescue Squad
4905 Branchville Road
College Park, MD
Chillum-Adelphi Volunteer Fire Department
7833 Riggs Road
Langley Park, MD
Kettering-Largo Fire/EMS Station
10400 Campus Way South
Upper Marlboro, MD
Glenn Dale Volunteer Fire Association
11900 Glenn Dale Boulevard
Glenn Dale, MD
Morris said if firefighters are away, on a call, you can leave your water donation at the door of the station.
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