Cell Phones for Troops
Most old cell phones end up forgotten in a box somewhere. But the boxes that Jan Watts is setting up in various locations will put unwanted phones to good use.
"What they do is that we collect these cell phones, turn them in, and they are recycled for calling cards and it's for our military that's overseas so that they can call home to their families," said Watts, local sponsor of Cell Phones for Soldiers.
The program was founded by two teens on the East Coast for only $21. Now, Cell Phones for Soldiers has spread nationwide, raising almost $2 million and 500,000 pre-paid phone cards. Watts said it was her way of giving back.
"The military does a lot of sacrifices for us and the military families do too. So anytime they can talk to their family, or loved ones, or friends. or anybody it really helps them over there," said Watts.
So far the program seems to be working.
"We have filled the basket several times. And the people of the community have been really receptive of the idea. And I think it's really cool that not only are we helping out the soldiers but the old cell phones don't end up in a landfill. And you know, it's just overall a good thing," said Melissa Cole, owner of Cole Motor Sales and Cycles, one of the businesses with a drop-off box.
The program is also a good thing for Watts. She is not only close to the military because of Cell Phones for Soldiers, but because her son currently in the army and based in South Carolina.Watts just got word that her son might be serving overseas later this year. So she knows just how much a phone call could mean.
"When you hear their voice it's always, will be a great relief of course. It will be hard to keep it together probably. But you have to, you have to stay strong for them," said Watts.
To donate your old phones, visit the drop-off locations below:
MACON: Bank of Macon, a Division of Bank of Kirksville, 1512 N. Missouri
BEVIER: Cole Motor Sales and Cycles, 814 Bloomington Street
KIRKSVILLE: Pro-Tech Co., 2411 E. Illinois Street
COLUMBIA: Mid-America Harley Davidson, 5704 Freedom Drive
MOBERLY: Trustees Cycle Shop, W. 24 Highway
For more information, call 660-349-9134