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story.lead_photo.caption In the last four years, Jamestown PTO has raised $27,000 for the school through the electronics and scrap metal recycling programs. Photo by Submitted

The end of a product's original use doesn't have to be the death of its life. Jamestown's parent-teacher organization is breaking down recyclable items to get more funds to the district.

For the past four years, Michael Lawson, PTO treasurer, has been leading the efforts.

"We've been able to raise $27,000 for the school through the electronics and scrap metal recycling programs," Lawson said.

He collects scrap metals and appliances, breaks down computers for copper and aluminum and takes any parts that can pull in funds to Gold Star Recycling, Jefferson City. All of the proceeds go into the PTO fund to help the school purchase supplies, including Kleenex, hand sanitizer and library needs.

"Schools and teachers struggle to make ends' meet and they are buying materials and stuff out of their own pockets," Lawson said. "We do our best to help out and make sure they don't have to do that — I mean, it's inevitable, but we just try to do our part."

With these funds, in 2016, PTO purchased the filtered water fountain in the school's lobby.

Soon, the PTO plans to survey the school and community to get ideas about what it wants to see purchased in the future.

Recently, a color recycling has been added to the program. Crayola Color Cycle allows markers to be collected and picked up for free at schools across North America.

"They pay for shipping into the facility and they take those markers and actually burn them for fuel," Lawson said.

So far, 90 markers have been collected at the school.

Lawson also introduced recycling to the city. Boonslick Industries picks up cardboard, glass, paper and plastic, weekly.

To get more funds, he said he is looking into up-cycling items that can be resold for more than the recycling cost.

"Recycling doesn't bring in a huge amount of money, compared to what the items are actually worth to people so I'm actually going to be approaching some businesses to see if anyone would be interested in purchasing some of these for parts, such as memory," Lawson said.

Anyone who has items to donate including appliances or cars may contact Lawson at