Seaside Police Dept. is new drop stationSEASIDE - Give your old cell phones, copy machines toner cartridges and computer printer cartridges a second use by donating them to the North Coast Community In Schools recycling program.

The nonprofit organization sends the used cartridges and cell phones to the Greenschool Project, which recycles the items and sends a small reimbursement check back to NCCIS. The money is used to fund the lunch buddy program, a mentoring project in Lewis and Clark, Astor, Gray, Warrenton, Seaside Heights and Gearhart elementary schools.

"We match adults with an elementary student who would benefit from a relationship with an adult outside of family," Executive Director Karna Cupples said. "The adult mentor meets with the student once a week for one hour during the student's lunch hour. They talk, play games, go to recess together or go to the library and read. It's really about whatever the student wants to do."

NCCIS partners with Fidelity National Title in Astoria, which has connected the organization with realty companies, The Daily Astorian and other businesses that regularly use printer and toner cartridges. The recycling effort usually makes about $100 a month.

Now South County businesses can take their used cartridges to the Seaside Police Department, which has agreed to be a drop station for the recycling effort. The Police Department will accept old cartridges and cell phones from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Cupples hopes that with the new drop station, the program will raise an additional $100 to $200 monthly. The organization also is funded by support from United Way and grants.

"Our budget is so small, that this would be a huge boost to the program," Cupples said.

When a student is matched with a lunch buddy, discipline referrals drop as much as 70 percent and attendance improves 50 percent. Academic scores improve "across the board," Cupples said.

"We're proud to be a partner in such a great cause," Seaside Police Evidence Technician Laura Yokoyama said. "Any positive influence children have in their life can make a big difference. Hopefully, by being a drop station, we can help raise more funds."

For more information about the project or if you are unable to take the cartridges to the Seaside Police Department or Fidelity National Title, call Cupples at 717-9171.

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