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12-Year-Old Starts Recycling Business, Donates Profits to Charity

12-Year-Old Starts Recycling Business, Donates Profits to Charity


Written by Stephen Messenger

When Sam Klein was still in kindergarten, he became fascinated with the things we throw away. Every week, on trash-collection day, the curious youngster would wait outside his house in St. Louis to watch, talk with, and oftentimes assist the visiting garbage men as they made their daily rounds. It was then, perhaps, that Sam first learned of the ugly realities of landfills — which may be why the now 12-year-old entrepreneur has entered the national spotlight for his recycling business.

“When you throw something away … it hasn’t gone away,” says Sam. “It’s just gone to a different location.”

So, for the last few years, Sam has dedicated his free time visiting local businesses to collect their empty printer ink cartridges, an easily recyclable item too often destined for the local dump. Once he gathers enough, Sam sorts them and sends them back by the box-full to the manufacturers, who pay sometimes as much as $200 for the recycled materials.

While his bold plan has shown that recycling can be profitable for both the environment and business-owners, the preteen pioneer never intended to line his pockets. Sam has donated all proceeds from his recycling charity — around $1,000 so far!

“It hurts him to see someone tossed aside, whether it’s a person or it’s garbage,” says Sam’s mother, Rachel.

Earlier this week, Sam garnered some well-deserved national attention. The story of this recycling philanthropist’s remarkable work was featured on NBC Nightly News — inspiring countless others with Sam’s youthful wisdom and contribution to making the world a better, cleaner, place.

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This post was originally published by TreeHugger.


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Photo: screen capture from above video

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3:23AM PDT on Jun 16, 2015

Well, I have got the best information from here the site is fully stuffed with the knowledgeable information. building business credit fast

11:33PM PST on Nov 30, 2014

Your articles and blogs are inspirational.

9:31AM PDT on Oct 16, 2014

Go Sam, you rock. You are part of saving this planet.

9:19AM PDT on Oct 16, 2014

clever boy !!!

3:14PM PST on Jan 7, 2014

this kid is awesome!

4:14AM PST on Jan 7, 2014

Go Sam! Gives me a bit of faith in the next generation :)

2:25PM PST on Jan 22, 2013

I feel the same way Sam.I realized long ago that just because it's out of sight does not mean it is out of mind.

3:07PM PST on Jan 14, 2013

Thank you TreeHugger, for Sharing this!

10:47AM PDT on Sep 7, 2012

What a good example!!!!!!!!!

9:06PM PDT on Sep 1, 2012

This is so great! Sam you are such an inspiration.

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