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Date ArticleType
1/7/2013 Press Release
Regional MLK Event to Collect Used Cell Phones for Underground Railroad

For Immediate Release: January 7, 2013

Contact: J.J. Boehm, Director of Media Relations (989) 964-4055

Regional MLK Event to Collect Used Cell Phones for Underground Railroad

The 2013 Great Lakes Bay Regional Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration will serve as an occasion to collect unwanted cell phones to benefit a community non-profit organization. Underground Railroad, Inc., which serves victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking, will receive a contribution for every phone that is recycled by its partner in the program, Shelter Alliance.  Some phones bring a return of as much as $30.

“Donating a used, unwanted cell phone allows community members to donate to an important cause without reaching into their wallets,” said Valerie Hoffman, executive director of Underground Railroad, Inc. “With the thousands of used cell phones sitting idly in our community, the fundraising potential is almost limitless.”

Since becoming a regional collaboration in 2010, the MLK Celebration has included a service and/or fundraising component. Last year’s event included a canned food drive, and previous years have included service projects for local United Ways.

The Bay Area, Midland Area and Saginaw community foundations each have agreed to serve as drop off sites for unwanted cell phones at their respective offices. In addition, Chemical Bank will collect phones at its branch locations in Bay, Midland and Saginaw counties.

Saginaw Valley State University and Delta College also are collecting phones. SVSU will collect phones at its University Conference and Events Center, located on the second floor of Curtiss Hall. Delta College will collect phones Friday, Jan. 11 during the MLK Youth Symposium Luncheon in Pioneer Gym. All collections will run through Wednesday, Jan. 16.

The regional MLK Celebration will be held Wednesday, Jan. 16 at 7 p.m. in the Malcolm Field Theatre for Performing Arts at SVSU. Award-winning journalist and National Public Radio host Michele Norris will be the featured speaker.

For more information on the event, visit

For more information on Shelter Alliance and its cell phone recycling program, visit