"What's better: to give someone a fish, or teach them how to fish?" asks Joe Vaccaro (pictured right, alongside Jeremiah Catterson and Rochelle Cobos).
The executive director of Community Intersections, a local nonprofit that assists developmentally disabled adults, says the organization strives for competitive job placement as they integrate their workers into the larger community.
The group is set for its grand opening of a downtown electronics and computer recycling center. Adults with developmental disabilities, such as cerebral palsy, autism or traumatic brain injury, provide all the electronic disassembly on-site. In addition to learning a trade, workers gain social and workplace skills in a supervised setting.
"Our goal is to move people toward the greatest degree of independence possible, and [to] foster self-sufficiency," says Vaccaro.
Unlike thrift stores or other recycling centers that accept items free of charge, Community Intersections asks for a small donation to offset costs and to help pay its staff. The organization cites a trio of recycling incentives: a tax deduction, environmental protection and a chance to assist those with disabilities.
Community Intersections, which has been in operation since 1995 and maintains three branches in Colorado, also works with Colorado Springs Utilities to recycle electrical cables.
Electronics Recycling Center
601 S. Wahsatch Ave., Suite B
Grand opening, Friday, Sept. 29, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Drop off Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and by appointment; call 219-3996.