Bottle tops give hope to disabled Greeks

July 2016: Since the scheme started in 2014 the collection of bottle tops for wheelchairs has continued to gain momentum with groups across Greece rallying the public and schools to collect plastic bottle tops.

What are the bottle tops worth?  around 20cents a kilo
A ton of bottle caps (roughly 540,000) can yield  €120 , which is the starting price of a wheelchair. The cap movement, that began through social media, soon grew as people began to gather plastic bottle tops for a good cause. Schools, hospitals and many other organizations around Greece are all involved in drives to collect plastic caps to recycle in order to help the environment as well as people in need of wheelchairs.protothema

Recently in Kalamata, Dimitris Vergopoulos, President of the Volunteer Committee of the Municipality of Kalamata and deputy mayor, reported that the proceeds from the caps collected for recycling has, so far, acquired two wheelchairs, and the aim is to get two more, and then money will be used to buy notebooks to be offered to students. The 2 chairs acquired are located at the Cultural Center and are available to people who need them. Interested parties can contact the Cultural Center, or tel 27210 87902. Already enough caps have been collected for a third wheel chair kalamata journal

Here in the Mani, local supermarkets are supporting the scheme . They have boxes for collecting bottle tops, usually by the entrance. You can collect the plastic covers of all packaging eg juice, milk, detergent, beverage, oil, or pen, but the caps must not contain any metal.

Where else can people donate?
The Greek parents group parents.org has collated information about groups and collection points all over Greece, and provides posters for anyone who wants to start a collection in their area. KTEL offer free transport to appropriate collection centres. Some groups only take tops from their area, but others, especially the Rhodes group collect from all over Greece, see http://parents.org.gr/health/a641 or call 210-347-6125 (Athens), 2310 539133-5 (Thessaloniki) and 2810 242084 (Rhodes) for local information.

The Rhodes Group
In Rhodes, the Samaritans Rescuers Rhodes organizes the Action "I collect caps ... I deliver smiles" to acquire wheelchairs. So far (April 2016) , since their action started in 2014 they have collected seven tons of caps, and have succeeded in buying 4 wheelchairs. Caps are sent from Greece to Rhodes (all bus transport is free ), where it is sorted. After sorting, the caps are sent to various recycling companies. The money raised is used to purchase wheelchairs. People receiving help, are selected  on specific criteria.  They are from all over Greece and usually children. The group also accepts donations of used wheelchairs. You can contact the Action support team by e-mail: For a live Google map of current collection points see  Μέρη συλλογής καπακιών για ανακύκλωσ  For more information see RHODOS


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