ALTOONA, Wis. (WEAU) -- Third grader Jackson Pauls spends a lot of his time at the baseball diamond in Altoona, Wisconsin during the summer. But one day, Pauls found something unusual.
“I was just throwing some trash away and I noticed there were so many plastic bottles in there and I just thought, I need to do something about it,” he said.
Pauls didn't waste any time doing something about it.
“I noticed that there wasn't any recycling in the Altoona Parks and Recreation Association, and I thought I should do something about it, and so we got started and went to the board about it and just talked with a lot of other people,” Pauls explained.
Emails, phone calls and meeting appearances, Pauls made sure that parks in Altoona would have a recycling option.
“I was blown away when I was contacted by Jackson, to meet with me, to see how he can increase recycling in the city,” says Recycling Specialist Amanda Haffele, who explained Pauls will be a part of a pilot program within the city that will start this summer, placing recycling bins at several parks, two of them in Altoona.
“His enthusiasm for recycling just warmed my heart. He reached out to city officials in Altoona and asked what could be done and if they could get recycling options,” said Haffele.
City Administrator Mike Golat says he is very much in favor of Jackson's idea, and Altoona is currently looking into the option of recycling at its parks.
So, how's Pauls feeling about all of this recycling success?
“It's kind of nerve racking but I’m really happy about it.”
His efforts have landed him as the recipient of the 2017 Outstanding Achievement in Recycling Youth Award.