Spring Cleaning: Area Boy Scouts Prepared to Relieve Folks of Extra Cell Phones

Rochester, MN (OPENPRESS) March 17, 2005 — If the statistical trend continues, there will be about one billion used, idle cell phones in the United States within five years – cluttering closets, desks and dressers across the country. Since that number is already at 500 million and counting, it’s no wonder that a local Boy Scout council that prides itself on building life and leadership skills for its youth has launched a collection campaign designed to raise cash and help the environment.

The Boy Scouts of America Gamehaven Council (1124 11 ½ Street SE, Rochester), in cooperation with the American Cellular Donation Organization (ACDO), a nonprofit organization based in Michigan, is asking for donated used cell phones, enabling the council to perform a valuable service to the environment. Nonworking cell phones that are collected will be recycled according to all EPA guidelines so they don’t end up in landfills, where their toxins could harm the environment. Although the collection campaign will raise some funds for the Scouts, the emphasis is on the council being able to do a good turn daily for the environment.

ACDO turns the donated cell phones into cash thru their sale to third world countries, small retailers, and other markets where refurbished wireless communication is welcome.

ACDO’s founder and CEO, Vincent Serio, said the number of used cell phones lying dormant in the United States grows by nearly 80 million every year as users strive to keep up with the latest technology, such as camera phones and other gizmos. That rate of increase, when added to the 500 million such cell phones in the U.S. currently, means the country will have about one billion of these units by 2010.

Adam Fischer of the Gamehaven Council said, “In scouting, boys learn through the experiences of camping, hiking, building projects and community service. The cell phone collection is part of their commitment to community service.” The Gamehaven Council, he said, has about 2,500 boys who will actively participate in the cell phone collection campaign. Fischer added that the council hopes to add several dropoff locations in addition to its main office at 1124 11 ½ Street SE in Rochester.

People interested in donating their used cell phones to the Boy Scouts of America Gamehaven Council can call (507) 287-1410. Donors can also visit www.gamehavencouncil.org for updates on dropoff locations and additional information on Scouting. Individual donors looking to donate cell phones to no particular cause may visit www.cellulardonation.org/zip.asp for the dropoff location nearest them. For more information about ACDO, including how your organization can raise funds and help the environment thru cell phone donations, call toll free at (888) 863-2355 or visit www.cellulardonation.org.

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