The 21st Century Community Learning Center at Soehl Middle School will partner with The Crayon Initiative to collect used and broken crayons that will be recycled and given to children’s hospitals. 

The project will brighten the lives of young patients while reducing environmental waste, said Isabella Scocozza, vice principal at Soehl and director of the 21st Century after-school program.

“I recently learned about The Crayon Initiative and thought it would be a positive community service project to incorporate within the 21st Century Community Learning Center,” she said. “This activity allows our students an opportunity to learn about the benefits of recycling along with promoting a caring culture and environment.”

The entire 21st Century Program will participate in the Crayon Initiative. One student from each classroom volunteered to be the liaison for the project and assist with the crayon collection and dissemination of information. There are collection boxes in the main office at Soehl, as well as at the 21st Century Office. Contact the 21st Century Office at (908) 486-0550 ext. 8787 to schedule a drop-off.

More than a half-million pounds of crayons are discarded every year, turning into a waxy sludge that clogs landfills and never biodegrades. The Crayon Initiative collects donated crayons from restaurants, schools and homes across the country, then melts them down and remanufactures them, reducing waste while brightening the lives of young hospital patients.

For more information about the project, visit www.thecrayoninitiative.org.

students posing around a table covered with crayons

21st Century Community Learning Center students, from left, Alejandro Carro-Quesada, Tyasia Knight, Samantha DaVilma, Angelo Charles, Marisol Ramos-Rodriguez, Leilani Ocasio-Cuevas, and Nafis Chandler-Pankey.