Planning begins for $1M grant to help fight crime in Flint neighborhoods

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Hamilton Community Health Network is working to make neighborhoods safer on the north side of Flint.

Last year they were awarded a $1 million federal grant from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance to help fight crime in Flint.

Now they’re putting together a plan to make it happen.

"We want to see change," says Flint resident Geri Clark.

Clark is the president of the North Flint Neighborhood Action Council, one of the organizations partnering with Hamilton to reclaim north flint neighborhoods.

"We still have people that live here and everybody doesn't want to move out you know. We still want to stay here but we still want our area to be beautiful just like everywhere else," says Clark.

Sandra Johnson is the project manager. She says the three year grant will be used to change perceptions and engage residents.

"Our main focus is community based crime reduction, so that's resident driven. We rely heavily on the neighborhood associations and the block clubs to let us know what their needs and wants are," says Johnson.

They'll also look at what's causing the crime.

"We work very closely with law enforcement the police departments, city administration and a variety of other community partners to help dissect the data, understand where the crime is coming from. What are some of the cause of the crime like blight, like poverty like mental illness or lack of educational opportunities and we begin to dive into that," says Johnson.

Jonhson says this year is all about solidifying the plan of action.

"After this planning year wraps up about April of 2019 we'll move forward into implementation and identifying projects and programs that could help to reduce crime and prevent violence in north Flint" says Johnson.

You can find more information about the November 10th community clean up project here.

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