Englewood, Ohio, residents may recognize Madeline Mobarry, or as some around town call her: "Maddie – the girl that collects cans."
She’s been making the planet greener for four years now by recycling aluminum.
When Maddie was in 7th grade she knew the only way she could attend the Northmont 8th grade class trip to Washington D.C. would be that she had to earn the money. Her uncle, Jack Froschauer from Vandalia, helped her come up with a plan.
Maddie contacted local clubs and asked if they would save their aluminum cans for her. She would then crush the cans and take them to be recycled.
Several local papers carried her story, and people from all around the area started saving aluminum. Madeline traveled to D.C. a year later--but her story doesn’t stop there.
"It didn’t make sense to stop, because I felt good about recycling, so I started setting goals for things I could accomplish," she said. "I had been playing the upright bass since fifth grade and wanted to take my music to the next level. I wanted to audition for the Dayton Philharmonic Youth Strings but needed to have my own bass. My mom and Uncle Jack started looking at auctions and garage sales, and after a while they found a used bass."
By the time the bass had been located, she had saved enough from recycling to afford it. She is now in her second year of playing with the DPYS.
Last summer, Maddie auditioned for the Mozart on the Green Chamber Music Festival at Ohio University. She applied for a scholarship through the Northmont Chamber Orchestra, and was able to play with students from all over the Midwest--paying the remaining fees with her "can money."
"It was a wonderful experience, and Ohio University has such a terrific music camp," Mobarry said.
Her collecting gained a large boost when a friend of the family told her to contact the Englewood Indoor Soccer owner, Jerry Bucher.
"Mr. Bucher let me put a container in, and I go by every week and get a bag full of cans...it’s really been a big help. The people there have been great!"
Maddie has big plans that she hopes to accomplish in her next three years of high school.
"I’ve been saving for my first car, another music camp and then college," Mobarry stated. She is already attending Sinclair Community College in the P.S.E.O. program through Northmont while finishing her sophomore year at Northmont High School.
"A car is next on my list. I got my license last week. If I could find a good car that’ll hold my bass, I could get myself to rehearsals and also take my cans to the recycling center."
Article republished with permission of the Englewood Independent.