By Megan Hansen/Around & About editor

Next time you drink a soda, think twice about tossing the can into the trash.Madison County Habitat for Humanity is teaming up with Eastern and The Center of Appalachian Studies to start an aluminum can recycling program to benefit Habitat for Humanity.

The kickoff for the can drive will be from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. today at the Powell Building, said Randy Wilson, a VISTA volunteer serving the Madison County Habitat for Humanity.

Recycling bags will be handed out at the kickoff, Wilson said. Flyers will be attached to the bags with information about aluminum can donations, Habitat for Humanity and how they are working to help the environment.

“We are very excited,” Wilson said.

For the rest of the semester the recycling program will only be a pilot program, Wilson explained.

“We will only have recycling bins set up in Case Hall, Dupree Hall, Palmer Hall and Walters Hall,” he said.

If you don’t live in any of these four dorms, you can take your aluminum cans to Facility Services, located behind the intramural fields and the softball field.

Wilson said if the recycling program is a success for the rest of the year, Habitat for Humanity hopes to expand the program.

“We would like to have a recycling bin in every dorm, office and classroom,” Wilson said.

Posters will be placed in the four dorms displaying where the recycling bins are.

The pilot program will help Habitat for Humanity see if an aluminum can drive will generate interest on Eastern’s campus.

According to Wilson, Habitat for Humanity is excited about teaming up with Eastern and The Center of Appalachian Studies.

“We have two strong partners,” Wilson said.

Wilson said that as of right now Eastern Facility Services has not had the opportunity to recycle. By teaming with Habitat for Humanity, Facility Services will have a place to recycle all the aluminum cans they gather on campus.

Aluminum can recycling is not something new to Madison County Habitat for Humanity.

Madison County Habitat for Humanity recently received a five-star can award in the Cans for Habitat program, Wilson said.

The five-star can award is given by Habitat for Humanity to local chapters that have raised money by recycling cans

“This award qualifies us for awards,” Wilson said. “There is grant money available. The top award is $50,000.”

Habitat for Humanity wants Eastern students to get involved with the program.

“With the aluminum can drive, we hope to put in students’ minds that every can can help build Habitat homes,” Wilson said.

He believes all campus groups should get involved.

“This is an outstanding way to give back to the community,” he said.

Habitat for Humanity is looking for creative people who can think of different ideas of ways to raise money for the organization.

“(The aluminum can drive) is one way to do it,” Wilson said.

For more information on the aluminum can drive and Habitat for Humanity, contact Wilson at 625-9208.

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