Over the last year, our own Contributing Writer Tia Shah, has been writing an amazing column about trailblazing girls throughout history. This new Incredible Girls column is in that vein, only this column is about contemporary girls under the age of 25 who are doing awe-inspiring and significant things in the world. Every Friday in 2019, we are going to post a column detailing the life of an Incredible Girl and why you should know about her. Read on for a glimpse into the life of activist Mari Copeny.
Despite her young age, 11-year-old activist Mari Copeny, “Little Miss Flint,” has been an active voice in Michigan state and the United States since she was eight. She has used her voice and platform to advocate for clean water for Flint, and other important causes like gun control. Her biography on her website says:
“Mari Copeny is on the front lines helping kids to embrace their power through equal opportunity. When the Flint Water Crisis began in Flint instead of feeling helpless Mari decided to use her voice to help out her community and to fight for the kids in Flint and she has not stopped since.”
When she was eight, Mari wrote a letter to then-President Obama asking to meet with residents of Flint, Michigan, when they were in Washington D.C. to attend congressional hearings on the Flint water crisis. President Obama responded with a letter that he was going to visit Flint and help ensure its residents had access to clean drinking water — there hasn’t been clean water in Flint since April 2014, when state officials switched the water supply from Lake Huron to the Flint River, to save money, without properly testing the water for bacteria.
Mari is still fighting hard for the residents of Flint, recently having raised more than $250,000 in a GoFundMe campaign for bottled water. Each dollar raised will provide 11 bottles of water per person. As of April 2019, they have provided 850,000 bottles of water for the people of Flint.
In addition to her water activism, Mari also is the youngest Women’s March Youth Ambassador, the National Youth Ambassador for the Climate March, and has spoken at the White House, the Science March in Washington D.C. and the United Nations Girl Up Leadership Conference.
As she says in her website biography:
“I’m 11. My generation will fix this mess of a government. Watch us.”
Go, Mari! The world can’t wait to see what you tackle next.
Girl Museum Inc.A