The Water Box: a new approach to clean water in Flint, Michigan

Since 2014

First Trinity Missionary Baptist Church has been one of the reliable hubs in Flint for residents to get safe drinking water via single serve bottled water. On designated days, residents line up in their cars, sometime for hours, to receive the water.

The logistics and heavy lifting, conducted voluntarily by the church deacons, is taxing and finite. And, because Flint isn’t in the news as it once was, the amount of water donated has plummeted. As an added challenge, the state of Michigan ended its free water program in Flint making the churches mission even harder for a community suffering through a prolonged water crisis.

With this box, First Trinity is able to extend its water service more broadly and sustainably.

The Water Box is a mobile water filtration system that uses proven methods to reduce heavy metals like lead and eliminate harmful bacteria from the water producing ten gallons a minute. We designed it to be rugged, portable, easy to use and serviced. It was designed using proven, certified parts to conduct a  four stage filtration process designed to filter out several types of heavy metals, sediments and bacteria. The following is the filtration process:

5 Micron Filter: Designed to remove the largest sediments and bacteria from the water
Carbon Filter: Designed to remove heavy metals such as Lead. Also removes taste and smell issues.
1 Micron Filter: Designed to remove smaller microbiological contaminants and additional bacteria
Ultraviolet Filter: Designed to be a redundant treatment layer against all forms of microbiological materials.

Why The Water Box?

A more efficient and sustainable solution was needed - designed by the residents for the residents with ongoing testing and public reporting for full transparency and trust. The Water Box is the result of collaboration between the church and several groups to engineer a solution specifically tailored around the churches current needs and capabilities with transparency.

The Water Box delivers clean drinking water at the rate of 10 Gallons per Minute.  Residents can quickly fill up jugs of all sizes.


The water is tested every time the Water Box is used for a variety of aspects including PH, TDS, and Lead by the system operators.  Additionally, the water is tested for microbiological content by Michigan accredited third-party laboratories to ensure the water is clean and safe. Daily tests for lead and microbiological contaminants are conducted and reported on a weekly basis. For added assurance: Quarterly Third Party testing for lead, microbiological contaminants and other heavy metals is conducted.


All of the testing results are made public to the residents of flint via:

You can help:

Flint needs more water jugs and more Water Boxes. You can donate a jug to First Trinity Church in Flint at the links below and they will distribute your gift to a resident in the community.

If you or your organization would like to sponsor an entire water box in Flint or elsewhere, please reach out to 501CTHREE at the link below.

The Water Box is a collaboration between:

Jaden Smith
& Drew FitzGerald

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