By Heath Hallada, Vice President of Sustainability

The number one reason Americans do not recycle is that they are unaware of what items can be recycled. This problem is even more prevalent among multifamily residents, as many residents are not even aware if their community offers recycling as an amenity. According to a recent study by NHMC & Kingsley Associates, 80% of all residents surveyed valued living in an apartment community that offers recycling.

Valet Living recognized this recycling problem and got to the drawing board, asking itself “how do we help save the planet and reduce our collective carbon footprint by encouraging residents to recycle?” The solution: partner with CNN Young Wonder, Ryan Hickman, and bring recycling education to its residents. 9-yearold recycling star Ryan has a passion for recycling and cleaning up the environment, and he will be the first to let you know it! Recycling over  400,000 cans and bottles throughout his short lifetime career, Ryan was eager to take his enthusiasm on the road and spread his knowledge to residents across the country.

“I love telling people how to be better recyclers, and it’s super fun to meet new people,” says Ryan Hickman. “It’s been really cool to go to different cities with Valet Living and talk to all the residents. A lot of people send me emails after the events telling me that they now recycle because of me, and that makes me feel good.”

Piggybacking on the success of the tour from the previous year, throughout this summer Valet Living partnered with Camden and Bozzuto to host its ‘Message in a Bottle’ tour with Ryan. Traveling across the country from San Diego to Washington D.C., Ryan visited Valet Living communities to talk to kids, parents and residents of all ages about the importance of recycling and recycling education.

Partnering with city officials, Valet Living provided official documents to residents, clarifying which items qualify for recycling in each city and community.

“[Valet Living has been] very informative, friendly and enthusiastic about reducing the human footprint!” resident Kaitlyn H. told us.

“Ryan Hickman sets the standard,” said Valet Living Chief Marketing Officer  Patti Girardi. “We are thrilled that Ryan can live his passion of recycling by being a brand ambassador for Valet Living, hosting recycling events across the country to help thousands of apartment residents be better recyclers tomorrow than they are today. Ryan is an inspiration, and we are excited to continue setting the standard in multifamily recycling education together.”

Valet Living is committed to setting the standard in recycling now more than ever by introducing a ‘doorstep recycling only’ solution to mid-rise and high-rise communities across the country. Valet Living is focused on delighting apartment residents by providing recycling education and an amenity solution that makes a positive impact on the environment that every resident can benefit from.

Cities like Los Angeles are already thinking toward the future and will extend recycling opportunities to everyone in the city. The city has also increased trash hauling costs while lowering or completely removing the cost to haul recycling. If 80% of residents start to recycle, think about how much apartment communities can save in hauling costs now and in the future! Call Valet Living at 888-855-6062 to learn how you can get a FREE recycling container for every apartment home in your community when you sign up for
doorstep recycling service.

“Ryan enthusiastically shared his passion for recycling with Camden residents when he visited three of our Camden communities during his ‘Message in a Bottle Tour.’ Our residents were enthralled by Ryan’s dedication and knowledge of recycling and his tips to ensure we are not harming animals or the environment were very well received.”

Linda WilleyDirector of Ancillary Services for Camden

“We loved having Ryan here! He is so full of energy and so passionate that it was hard for our residents to stay away! During our event he was so engaging in teaching our residents about the importance of recycling, and everyone had a really great time! It really helped raise recycling awareness and after the event we had many residents come up to us and say it was great to learn more about recycling.”

Christiana BerardiProperty Manager, The Porter Del Ray, a Bozzuto Management Company