As a long time volunteer for Cowley County Humane Society, I write to share some thoughts about a year-round fundraiser that benefits the shelter.

For several years, my husband and I transported aluminum cans collected in the collection bin at the shelter to Wichita for recycling. Things changed with the addition of more collection bins placed in Arkansas City and Winfield.

This came at about the same time a recycling company from Wichita brought a semi-trailer to sit on shelter grounds. Now, cans are placed in the trailer. When filled, the company brings an empty trailer in exchange for the filled trailer. There is a minimum fee, but this convenience means no more trips to Wichita, which were happening as often as every four weeks.

Thank you to everyone who already donates aluminum cans to benefit CCHS.

As someone who has helped empty the can collection bins, I do have some requests. If cans are brought in bags, go ahead and tie them. Loose cans are managed because volunteers come prepared to put them in bags. You can imagine that the bags, no matter the size, easily stack in the semi-trailer.

Please donate only aluminum cans. Foil, aluminum pie tins and steel cans do not recycle in the shelter collection.

On a collection trip in April, three neatly packed bags of brown bottles were discovered. Another recent discovery was crushed loose cans mixed with leaf debris turning the cans into something unusable for recycling. That same trip also found other trash items — ceramic tiles and rusting steel cans. This means lost space for cans and lost time for those moving the cans to the recycle trailer.

On June 8, volunteers, including children, made a trip to collect cans. Fortunately all were wearing gloves, because they found three large bags of used toilet paper. Yes, they discovered human waste. This was obviously collected and placed there for others to handle.

I was shocked and sickened that some individual would take such steps to endanger the health of others. 

Please join or continue to help Cowley County Humane Society with its recycling efforts. It makes a difference. Anyone seeking volunteer opportunities, including aluminum can collection, can contact the shelter at 221-1698, Facebook, or


Teresa Cox


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