Bottles4College. In these May 2021 images provided by Maria Price,
Genshu Price stands on the back of a truck (above photo) after loading
it with recyclable cans and bottles from Kualoa Ranch in Hawai‘i for his
fundraiser, Bottles4College. In the bottom photo, Genshu Price sorts
recyclables at his home in Hawai‘i. (Bottles4College Price via AP)
From The Asian Reporter, V31, #8 (August 2, 2021), page 7.
Hawai‘i teenager recycles to help students reach
By Jessie Wardarski and Luis Andres Henao
The Associated Press
In the beginning, Genshu Price recycled for his own sake — his father
said it would be a good way to save money for his college tuition.
But then, he came up with grander idea: Why not recycle thousands of
bottles and cans to help other students in Hawai‘i reach their college
"That way, it would be able to help a lot more local families, help a
lot more people throughout the generations," Price said.
The 13-year-old from Oahu launched Bottles4College three years ago.
The goal is to collect and recycle 2 to 4 million cans and bottles
annually to fund college tuition for up to two students. Price said his
project "gained traction" during the coronavirus pandemic.
"People saw this as a way to give an opportunity back to local
families, especially since the pandemic has hit everyone so hard,
especially the kids," he said. At the same time, they would protect the
environment and keep their island clean.
His mother, Maria Price, recalled how he began going around to
beaches, Little League baseball games, and parks, "just asking people if
they’re done with their drinks," to collect their bottles and cans,
which he sorted with his parents’ help.
Since then, he has collected more than 100,000 bottles and cans and
has received support from businesses and schools, setting up drop-off
depots at places like Mililani Uka Elementary School, the Kualoa Ranch
nature reserve, and S.W. King Intermediate School, which he attends.
"Hawai‘i already has very high living costs. COVID made that even
harder," he said. "I want to give a way for students who may not ...
have been able to go to college by themselves."
Bottles4College, he said, is based on four pillars: education,
environment, community, and lifestyle. "We’re helping the environment by
recycling," he said. "We’re helping education by providing scholarship
funds for Hawai‘i kids and inspiring them to want to get a good
education. And then you’re bringing communities together."
It’s a lifestyle, he said, because the other pillars become a part of
The soon-to-be eighth grader is also an aspiring filmmaker; he
created a documentary highlighting his work. He also posts videos on
YouTube, including tips on how to sort cans and bottles and encouraging
others to recycle.
"We still have a little bit to go to get to the place where we want
to be, but it’s definitely exciting. Every can counts, it’s one can or
bottle at a time," he said.
Caring about others, he said, is even more important during
"In school they teach you how to treat other people how you want to
be treated," he said. "And especially at a time like during the
pandemic, that phrase really comes into play."
"One Good Thing" is a series that highlights individuals whose
actions provide glimmers of joy in hard times — stories of people who
find a way to make a difference, no matter how small.
Associated Press religion coverage receives support from the Lilly
Endowment through The Conversation U.S. The AP is solely responsible for
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