Recycling program boosts school revenues

Businesses across the US are recycling used ink cartridges and personal electronics to equip their favorite charities and local schools with funding for new technologies and supplies.
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Businesses across the US are recycling used ink cartridges and personal electronics to equip their favorite charities and local schools with funding for new technologies and supplies.

Reports by the National Association of State Budget Officers in 2010 estimate that nationwide K-12 budgets were cut by $1.8 billion and anticipate $2.5 billion in cuts for fiscal year 2012. Approximately 23 states have made “identifiable, deep” cuts in pre-k and/or K-12 education, according to the Center on Budget Policies and Priorities.

“Times are tough everywhere,” said Sean Michaels, president, FundingFactory. “Our program gives the private sector an opportunity to take sustainable action and help nonprofit organizations fill budget gaps without having to spend a dime.”

FundingFactory’s fundraising-thru-recycling program is a no-cost way for all businesses to help support their favorite schools and nonprofits. The process is simple: Commit to recycle used cartridges and small electronics, choose a local or national organization to receive recycling points – points that can be used to purchase classroom technology and supplies, or converted to cash – and ship recyclables in FundingFactory’s pre-paid boxes.

Elk County Catholic School System in St. Marys, Pennsylvania, has been involved since 1999 and has earned more than $25,000 through FundingFactory’s program, with help from several St. Marys area business supporters.

“It’s an incredible community effort and not a bad return for mailing in garbage (for free),” says Marlene Stubber, Elk County’s technology coordinator.

One of Elk County’s business supporters, Metaldyne, agrees.

“I know Elk County needs all the help it can get. With very little effort and no financial commitment, Metaldyne is able to help make an impact which benefits the school,” said Keith Simons, Metaldyne employee and a former student and current boys basketball coach in the school district.

“Since 1996, we have been able to share more than $26 million with schools and non-profits due in large part to the efforts of business supporters,” said Erika Dauber, program manager, FundingFactory.

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Califone International, Inc., has partnered with FundingFactory to help schools recycle end-of-life audio equipment and enhance sustainability initiatives. Through the partnership, FundingFactory participants earn points redeemable for cash or new technology by collecting used headsets and headphones for recycling. Audio equipment has been added to FundingFactory’s Qualifying Items list, which also includes used inkjet and toner cartridges, cell phones, laptops, and other small electronics. In addition to recycling used headphones and headsets, participants can redeem their points for Califone products, including the award-winning, washable Titanium™ headsets and the iPhone/iPod Wireless Portable PA System.

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FundingFactory Reports Increased Recycling by Schools and Nonprofits

Schools and nonprofits reached a record-level 3.2 million pounds of e-waste recycled in 2011 through FundingFactory, yet only a small fraction of printer cartridges, mobile devices and other small electronics are recycled in the United States. To heighten awareness, and participation in e-waste recycling, FundingFactory pledges an Act of Green in honor of Earth Day 2012 by planting one tree for every 100 recyclable items received during the month of April.

FundingFactory Honors America Recycles Day Through ‘Care2Collect Just 1’ Drive

In recognition of America Recycles Day, November 15, FundingFactory is sponsoring the “Care2Collect Just 1” campaign to help schools, nonprofits and businesses in protecting the environment while supporting their local communities. Participants are encouraged to recycle one e-waste item through FundingFactory, and donate one non-perishable food item to their local food bank.  For every 100 recyclable items collected, FundingFactory will donate $1 to Second Harvest Food Bank with the goal of raising more than $3,000. Additionally, the free recycling fundraiser aims to raise awareness for America Recycles Day by collecting and recycling more than 300,000 recyclables by the end of November.