Make Ripples by Recycling Odds & Ends
How many ripples can you make?
Instead of saying “How can I recycle this?” You might ask, “How can I reuse it to support the Head Start program? How can I recycle it in such a way as to make it beneficial for special needs adults, or kids around the world who need a learning boost? How can this junky old key become a meal for someone who is hungry?” It’s like magic, and voila! A key becomes a meal, an old USB drive becomes a learning opportunity. It’s like a game, in which you get points for making as many ripples as possible. Are you ready to play?
This week’s Making Ripples column in the Fayetteville Free Weekly is all about recycling those odds and ends. People typically talk about recycling in terms of plastic, glass, and paper, but what about USB drives and electric razors? Check out what I learned in this week’s column, and also see what the Reagan family is doing to live sustainably in our People Making Ripples feature photo.
My next personal challenge is to make as many ripples as possible with Almond Dream #5 plastic yogurt cups. Right now, I’m at the “first level” of the game where I’ve identified that it is not a recyclable object, but I’m leveling up to level two by asking how this object can be upcycled into something that is aesthetically pleasing in my home. We define for ourselves what each level can mean in making a difference to ourselves and the world. Level three might be finding a way to turn yogurt cups into a functional garden seed bed or other tool, for instance. Level four might be discovering how to garden with yogurt cups in a way that prevents millions of yogurt cups from being thrown away around the world (maybe someone could create an online yogurt cup gardening photoblog that goes viral). So I can help the environment with a yogurt cup, but actually I can do much more, too. Increasing levels can challenge me to find ways to fight malaria with yogurt cups, or raise money for a food pantry or a mission trip with Habitat for Humanity – these things help me, the environment, and also people throughout the world. The possibilities are as endless as the problems that present opportunities to make ripples.
Odds & Ends to Recycle
For Norelco brand razors, recycling them donates $1.00 to support programs for special needs adults. Send your old razors to:
Overland Park, Kansas 66207
Please write RECYCLE on the outside of your package.
For any and all brands of electric razors, recycle them by sending to:
315 S 11th St.
Lincoln NE 68508
For upcycling ideas, visit: 8 Creative Ways to Recycle USB Flash Drives
To recycle USB drives in support of education for children worldwide, visit Sugar on a Stick through Recycle USB.
To recycle USB drives in support of small business owners in developing countries, visit Inveneo. I love this awesome organization!
Hi Amanda, Good ideas and post. And plastics are one of my hot buttons. I can’t help but wish level one was don’t produce products that can’t be recycled, level 2 stop buying products that can’t be recycled, but I know that’s extreme. And I don’t live it either.
Hi Brad, thanks for reading! I totally agree; what are manufacturers thinking when they produce things that can’t be recycled?! But I don’t live level 2 either…I just aspire.