Everyday electronics turn into piles of toxic trash when they reach a landfill. To help reduce the buildup, the Electronic Recycling Association launched a fundraising campaign that will benefit local charities.
A Canada-based e-waste organization came up with a unique way to help local charities raise money while, at the same time, responding to a growing crisis around improper disposal of electronic equipment.
The Electronic Recycling Association announced this week the launch of its E-Waste Fundraising Program, which will compensate charities with cash when they collect electronic equipment for ERA. To qualify, charities must collect at least 50 items—like laptops, cellphones, and tablets—that will be recycled. Once the minimum is reached, ERA will weigh the additional electronic items and provide a 10-cents-per-pound rebate.
Participation in the program is free, and ERA said it will provide the necessary resources—staff to collect items, collection bins—and create marketing materials to help promote a participating charity’s collection event.
“We need to start thinking outside the box to get people properly disposing of their old equipment. It is piling up in our landfills or becoming obsolete in people’s cupboards and basements,” ERA Founder and President Bojan Paduh said in a statement. “What better way than to pay the people who have such positive roles in our communities to collect it for us? We divert more equipment from landfills, they have funds to put toward program development—it’s a win-win.”
Beyond keeping potentially dangerous items out of landfills, the program will help extend the life of a whole bunch of unwanted electronics. In a blog post, ERA said it will refurbish the items it collects and get them back out into the community to help the less fortunate—the basic mission of the organization. Any materials that are deemed unsuitable for donation will be properly disposed of by ERA.
The program is also open to for-profit organizations as long as the proceeds benefit a charitable cause.