Every household has a collection of old house keys hidden away in a drawer or cupboard that they no longer have any use for. Instead of simply throwing these keys out in the trash there are ways that you can recycle them.
Donate Keys to Charity
Many charities run key collection drives where they collect a large number of keys together and then sell the metal to scrap metal yards to help fund their charitable work.
Key For Hope is a Massachusetts based charity that collects unwanted keys for scrap metal recycling and uses the proceeds to help fund homeless shelters and food pantries.
Key For Hope is the brain child of Ralph Greenberg (pictured right) who found inspiration one day when flying long haul from the UK. Sat in his chair, with nothing to do for 7 hours, Ralph found himself wondering how he could do something to help the poor in his community. A story about a school that collected paperclips for recycling sparked an idea in his mind - what about collecting all those old keys everyone has stuck a drawer at home. By the time his plane landed in Boston, Key For Hope was born.
It's really inspiring for us, at recyclingNJ, to hear about people who give of their time to give back to their community and combine their charitable giving in a way that helps protect resources and the environment too.
Why not support Ralph and his team and set up a key collection at your own work or school. It only takes 5 easy steps.
Contact Key For Hope and ask them to send you collection buckets, stickers and anything else they can provide to get you started.
- Tell everyone you know about your key collection drive and ask them to tell everyone they know. Contact recyclingNJ and ask us to put the details of your key drive on this webpage (It's free!).
- Collect as many old keys as you can. Keep the brass keys (golden color) separate from the steel (silver color) keys.
- Take the keys to a scrap metal yard near you and sell them. Key For Hope tell us that the best price for the keys will be obtained from scrap metal recyclers that are registered with the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI). For a list of ISRI members in New Jersey, click here.
- Send the proceeds to Key For Hope to fund food donations in poor communities.
For more information consult the Keys in the Classroom web page.