The Container Story

Ever since I can remember, every Saturday morning, my dad would take his weekly “dump trip” to the Wellesley Recycling Center. I never really understood the importance of my town’s recycling center, until I realized all of the good it really stands for. Not only does it save the community money by replacing a trash pick up company, but also it stands as a place where you can go to drop off what seems to be a worthless item and someone can take it and reuse it for their personal desire. About a year ago, My dad’s coworker, Abasi Semakula, asked my dad if he had any old bikes lying around that he would want to give to him. My dad asked him why he wanted the old bikes, and if he was planning on using them for his personal use. Abasi proceeded to tell my dad his reasoning for wanting the bikes, and what he was going to use them for. He told my dad that he was filling up a container of old toys, bikes, and sports equipment; basically anything that a child could play with, and sending the crate to his native village in Uganda, Africa. Abasi created The Clover Children’s Toy Project, based at his house in Maynard Massachusetts, where he fills up a container of the recycled toys and ships them back to the hundreds of poor Ugandan children whose families are unable to buy them their own toys to play with. The crates of toys sent over not only allow the children to play with them, but has also affected their happiness and outlook on life. The older children fix the toys that aren’t as new as some and are able to get them working again which results in life long working skills. When I learned about how life-changing toys were to these kids, I realized how lucky I was to grow up with so many. I knew that I wanted to help and give back to others in some way. Recycling the toys that I had out grown and no longer had use for was one way I could do so. I remember the first time, loading up my dad’s black pickup truck, with bikes, roller blades, action figures, and balls from my house and giving it to Abasi for his crate. He was so thankful and appreciative of my efforts to supply these children, half way around the world, with toys. He told me that the children in the village would be forever grateful for my donations, and that I had done a great deed. What I had done was only a small contribution to the project, but I really liked the feeling I got from donating to this cause.