FLINT, Mich. (AP) – Hall of Fame basketball player Magic Johnson is joining an effort by the owner of the Detroit Pistons to help Flint amid the city’s crisis with lead-tainted water.
The FlintNOW campaign announced Tuesday that the partnership with Johnson will focus on education initiatives to benefit schools, children and families. Johnson and Tom Gores say they’ll explore a scholarship program like one they worked on for Lansing students.
Johnson grew up in Lansing and played for Michigan State and the Los Angeles Lakers. He says in a statement that “fixing the water alone won’t solve the long-term problems in Flint.” He says efforts to support education are a key part of Flint’s future.
Gores and Johnson, both Michigan State University graduates, have been friends for years and last year worked together on a $1 million campaign for the Lansing Promise, a scholarship program offered to students in need that graduate from schools within the Lansing School District boundaries.
Gores, a Flint native, earlier pledged to raise $10 million to address the city’s short- and long-term needs.