In this Heart of Autism post, 22-year-old JAcob Albretson talks about his love of recycling and why he is donating part of the proceeds back to good causes like Autism Speaks.
I must start by saying that writing isn't my strong point. Math is (and I aced Calculus). My name is Jacob Albretsen. I am 22-years-old and I have Asperger’s and ADHD. My Asperger’s sort of means that I have a ton of great ideas but sometimes social situations are more difficult for me. I am hard of hearing in my left ear (approx. 10%) and deaf in my right. I have been recycling for years. I recently started getting into it again. I stopped for a year or two while I had to focus on college. I'm planning to transfer to a 4-year college next fall. I haven't had many friends growing up, but I occasionally talk to them.
I’m a great recycler. I recently shared a flyer in my neighborhood asking for help from my neighbors with recycling. I’d like to recycle as much as possible in our neighborhood! With the money collected by recycling, I donate 60% of the collection proceeds to Autism Speaks and a 2nd charity which changes monthly. I go around my neighborhood and pick up my neighbors’ recycling and take the recyclables to a recycling facility on the 1st and 3rd Friday of each month.
The donations not only feel good doing, but they will also help my parents when it's time to pay taxes next year. The other 40% is deposited into an online savings account where it sits, earning interest at 0.98% monthly. Is there a better feeling than donating and saving at once? Probably just the feeling that I'm making a positive impact somewhere.
When my mom posted my flier on a site called NextDoor.com, which helps neighbors keep in contact (and it's private, only visible to nearby neighborhoods), she received several letters from nearby parents who were impressed by what I'm doing and that their kids were autistic as well.
Do you have ideas for our Heart of Autism series highlighting individuals on the autism spectrum giving back to the community? We would love to hear from you! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Check out previous Heart of Autism stories here.