Ryan Hickman is an inspiration because he is an example of what kids can do. He was already three when he realized recycling was his future. Ryan, 11, is preserving the environment with his own recycling business and has given $12,880 to the Pacific Marine Mammal Center.
His father accompanied him to the recycling facility in 2012 so they could exchange some cans and bottles for cash.
Ryan’s supportive father Damion Hickman told a local newspaper, “He likes sorting stuff, and he enjoyed putting the bottles in the machine.” He most likely received two or three dollars, and he was overjoyed. He had to sort his change thereafter, which required more sorting.
The next day, Ryan informed his parents that he intended to provide empty plastic bags to each of his neighbors so they could collect their recyclables. For the young environmentalist, their friends, relatives, and coworkers had also saved their cans and bottles.
Today, Ryan provides customer service in Orange County, California. The 11-year-old child goes through the cans and bottles that customers have left each week. Ryan is picked up by clients in vehicles driven by his grandparents and parents. They also assist him with event planning, social media management, and lifting large objects.
I’ve recycled over 1 million cans and bottles since I was 3.5 years old. Ryan proudly recounted his experience with recycling as an 11-year-old.
Every can and bottle I recycle does not wind up in the ocean, a landfill, a lake, a river, a reservoir, or being consumed by, infecting, or killing animals. Ryan adds that this is what makes him excited about recycling.
A plastic bottle breaks down in the environment in 600 years, a glass bottle in 1 million years, and a soda can in 9 years. Recycling these materials is essential since it takes a long time for them to degrade. As a consequence, we will safeguard ecosystems, conserve natural resources, and lower carbon emissions that contribute to global warming.
Ryan claimed that the encouragement he receives in the form of letters and emails from people all around the world to continue recycling inspires him to do so.
In 2016, Ryan and his recycling business became well-known. Since then, he has been on several websites, television programs, and radio stations all over the world. He has been on The Pickler & Ben Show, Little Big Shots, and The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Ryan was also interviewed by Maria Menounos for Ryan Seacrest’s syndicated radio show on Sirius/XM.
Despite his youth, he has already accomplished a lot. The 11-year-old amazing child is a San Juan Capistrano Citizen of the Year and a CNN Young Wonder. Ryan was recognized as one of the 100 Most Influential People by the Orange County Register the same year. He was selected as one of the top 20 finalists for TIME magazine’s 2020 Kid of the Year award a few months ago.
Bottles of beverage in plastic, glass, and aluminum are collected and recycled by Ryan’s recycling business. He intends to save money from his recycling business for both a full-size trash truck and his college expenses.
Ryan gives the Pacific Marine Mammal Center in Laguna Beach all the money he makes from selling t-shirts with the company logo on them.
Visit Ryan’s website to learn more about his recycling business and his amazing commitment to protecting the environment. In the video below, you can see why he was named the 2017 CNN Young Wonder.