Canada

Calgary charitable organization hosting electronics recycling roundup amid COVID-19

The Vecova charitable organization has been offering recycling for decades at its bottle depot in northwest Calgary, and it’s now expanding into something new for the coming weekend.

Vecova will be operating its first electronics recycling roundup on Saturday, March 6 and Sunday, March 7, an event that will also help the organization’s efforts to support people facing mental and physical challenges.

“(We’ll be accepting) laptops, digital cameras, cell phones,” Vecova’s Christopher Anstey said.

“Anything and everything — electronics that have been kind of kicking around in your basement or your attic for the last five or 10 years.”

Read more: ‘It doesn’t belong in our landfills’: What to do with your old electronics

The organization plans to run the roundup by using many of the adaptions it’s brought in for its bottle depot because of COVID-19 restrictions, including curbside drop-off.

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“As you come in to the E-cycle roundup, you’ll drive up, pop your trunk and we’ll take the electronics out of there,” Anstey said. “There are no touch points between the customer and any of the staff, and we are well within the COVID regulations.”

There is no charge to drop off any electronics items, but people are welcome to leave donations.

Vecova will also be getting some money from the processing plants that handle the old electronics, with any money raised during the event going to support programs for the 450 people the organization will be helping this year.

Read more: Electronic waste is piling up. Here’s why you should care

“Our housing programs, our health and wellness programs,” Anstey said.

The bottle depot provides employment opportunities for people who may have struggled to find work, among them Chris Hurley, who’s been working at the depot since April 2012.

“I have ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder), a learning disability that’s actually part of the ADD,” Hurley said. “Basically, I have challenges day after day.”

Hurley says being employed at the bottle depot has helped him overcome those challenges.

“I like working with the customers.”

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