Boy scout to host ‘E’ waste recycling drive in final push for Eagle Scout badge

Published 8:48 pm Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Tommy Young, middle stands with the Decatur County Board of Commissioners, from left: Georgia Anderson, Pete Stephens, Alan Thomas (Decatur County Administrator), Dennis Brinson, Rusty Davis and Steve Brock.

In a society where the world is oftentimes seen as one large garbage can, a Bainbridge boy scout is playing his part in an effort to raise awareness on the potential hazards of electronic litter.

Tommy Young is a rising junior at Grace Christian Academy, a Star Scout in BSA Troop 502 and a recycling-conscious individual who chose to host an “E” waste drive as his Eagle Scout Project. The last step of a scout’s career is to plan, develop and lead a service project that will benefit the community.

A fan of electronics himself, Young decided this was the best way to raise awareness on reducing electronic litter and ease up on the flow of “E” waste into landfills.

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The drive will take place this Saturday, May 27, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Howard Johnson parking lot on Tallahassee Highway. Residents with old computers, printers, televisions and any other electronic waste can dispose of it in a safe way for free. SmithCo Recycling will handle the recycling duties.

“People say it’s not their problem, someone down the line will worry about that,” Young said about the reluctance people have to rethinking how they throw away trash.

The problem, Young realized, is when a million people say that. He saw those effects firsthand during a Rivers Alive cleanup at the Big Slough, where Young came across old electronics littering the environment.

The idea for his Eagle Scout Project occurred then and there.

“He is an electronics genius,” BSA Troop 502 scout leader Steve Reynolds said. “He likes it. This is his idea and he has done a really good job.”

Once completed, Young will appear before the Eagle Board in June to discuss how the project went, how it worked and any problems he had. If approved, he will receive his Eagle badge.

“This is the last hurdle he has to achieve,” Reynolds said.

Young has been a scout since the fifth grade. Only five percent of kids who become scouts reach the prestigious level of Eagle Scout. The badges lined row after row on his uniform’s sash show how much work he’s put in to get here and what he’s earned along the way.

After the “E” waste drive, SmithCo recycling will offer full electronic garbage recycling survives.

Sponsors for the project include Howard Johnson, Live 101.9 Radio WBGE, Dominos and SmithCo Recycling.