March 12, 2012

Option for Electronic Recycling Available through Macomb Habitat

By Barb Pert Templeton, Voice Reporter

When the Macomb Count Habitat for Humanity ReStore recently hosted an inaugural event inviting residents to drop off electronics to be recycled the response was fantastic.


“It was amazing, there was an assortment of everything from TVs to toaster ovens and anything else electronic that people didn’t know what else to do with,” Nicole White, marketing and public relations manager at Macomb County Habitat for Humanity said. “It went very well; they were busy there at the restore all day.”


Michigan Habitat Director of Communications Debra Lashbrook said the free electronics recycling service program was launched statewide at the end of January. Working with Vintage Tech Recyclers, an approved Michigan recycling company, habitat stores across the state will offer consumers a place to recycle certain working or non-working electronics.


“We are delighted to be able to offer this service in partnership with Vintage Tech Recyclers,” Lashbrook said, noting that in her own community consumers must purchase a recycle sticker to have items picked up while this service is totally free.


Keeping the program to a quarterly schedule this first year, White said Macomb Habitat will host the next drop off days on Friday and Saturday, April 20 and 21 during regular ReStore hours, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.



Electronic items approved for recycling include:


o Computers, computer components and laptops;


o Monitors, keyboards, mouse, printers, fax machines, and scanners;


o Video game consoles and TV’s;


o Cell phones and PDA devices; and


o MP3 players and iPods.


Andy Andersen, manager for the Habitat Restore Distribution Center, said Habitat of Michigan has 50 restores across the state and has had a contractual relationship with Vintage Tech since August 2011. There are 11 collection centers for recycled items most in the lower third of the state.


“Although we will do some promoted events, one per quarter, we are emphasizing that the ReStore collection centers are able to receive items for recycling, year round,” Andersen said. “And no packaging or prep of items is required.”


In accordance with state requirements, recycled computers have their hard drives wiped clean. There is no charge for this service, but HFH receives compensation from Vintage Tech, Andersen said.


For more information visit the restore website at


White said unlike other programs that seek cell phone donations, Habitat will take the battery and charger along with the actual cell phone.


“We will take it all, it’s not strictly the cell phone, and we are happy to provide a place for these items that people have and don’t know what to do with,” White said. “And it’s really cool that we can save the earth of the electronic waste going into the landfills.”


Beyond the new electronics recycling program, the Habitat Restore will continue to accept donations of other items during normal business hours and there is no charge for this public service.


To find out more about the Free Electronics Recycling Service call (586) 263-1540 . The ReStore is located at 130 N. Groesbeck Highway in Clinton Township.


Barb Pert Templeton is a freelance reporter. She can be contacted