A social project worth millions of smiles

In 2011 Bryan Ware celebrated another birthday in a restaurant in the San Francisco area of California, an employee brought him two crayons for his children to make the typical children’s drawings.

The scene was common with other trips to the restaurant, but this time Bryan wondered what would happen to those semi-used pencils when the family left the space. When he realized that the pencils were being trashed, Bryan came up with the idea of creating the Crayon Initiative, a social project that delivers pencils to California hospitals.

The idea is simple: Bryan takes home used pencils from restaurants and schools, melts them, places the liquid in a custom mold, and recycles them into new pencils that are then delivered to children in hospitals.

Each recycled “pot” [see gallery] can create 96 new crayons. The mold creates thicker pencils that are more easily used by children with special needs.

According to the Crayon Initiative, about 34,000 pounds of crayons are thrown into the trash by restaurants and schools in California. “If these crayons allow the children to escape from that hospital for ten minutes, our work is done,” commented Bryan Ware.

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