Keeping Tabs

Text: T T
East Elementary student collects pop tabs for juvenile cancer patients
by JULIE HALM Reporter


Jackson Glynn, a member of Cub Scout Troop 616, shows the 26,000 pop tabs he collected for the Shriners Hospital for Children. He said that being a good Scout was just one of the motivating factors. Jackson Glynn, a member of Cub Scout Troop 616, shows the 26,000 pop tabs he collected for the Shriners Hospital for Children. He said that being a good Scout was just one of the motivating factors. Jackson Glynn heard from a family friend that collecting pop tabs could help children with cancer. Despite the idea sounding a bit abstract, the 9-year-old wasted no time after that.

He began to collect tabs with a goal of 1,000 in mind and the thought of out-collecting the family friend. It turns out that the fourth-grader at East Elementary is better at collections than he anticipated.

Last year, Jackson collected 26,000 pop tabs for the Shriners Hospital for Children in Erie, Pa. The pop tabs are weighed by the pound and then sold for scrap metal to help raise funds for the hospital.

After the first 10,000 being counted by hand, weight is exactly how the family decided to figure out how many they had.

Jackson received a certificate from the hospital, acknowledging and thanking him for his contribution, but the young philanthropist isn’t stopping here.

Thisyear, hehas decidedto makehis mission 30,000 tabs, and surprisingly, doesn’t think he will have too tough a time doing it.

Jackson makes announcements on the loud speaker at school requesting that students bring in their tabs and goes home with sandwich baggies full of them almost every day.

“This little bag right here,” Jackson said, holding up an undersized plastic bag he pulled from his backpack, “is probably at least 150.”

His mission doesn’t stop at his school doors, however. Jackson is coming up with new ways to collect the tabs, such as putting containers at bottle return locations.

Jackson’s outgoing personality has served him well in his mission for pop tabs. He recently asked a flight attendant if she could collect the pop tabs from the flight for his cause. He received the tabs from every can served on board.

“Everybody is Jackson’s friend,” said his mother, Trish Glynn.

He estimates that he will reach his goal by roughly Christmas. He then plans on giving it a break but only until summer comes around.

According to Glynn, this sort of generosity and charity is nothing new for Jackson.

The family enjoys traveling and on one trip, took Jackson and his two older sisters to Ecuador.

After witnessing the quality of life for much of the population in that country, Jackson decided he would prefer to spend his souvenir money taking orphans out to dinner. “It just made me realize how lucky our family was,” Jackson said. The family started heading to their meal with three additions to their party, but arrived with eight more that they found along the way.

Jackson gladly helped some of the younger children wash their hands, and then the whole group sat down to the meal.

On a family trip to China last year, Jackson saw puppies being sold out of plastic bags and implored his mother to let him spend his souvenir money on them.

“Now I get to help kids in America,” he said. “And I think that’s pretty cool, too.”

The pint-sized philanthropist is also a member of Cub Scout Troop 616 and told his cub master that this is the type of thing that a good Scout would do.

Despite Jackson’s natural gravitation toward philanthropy, there are larger reasons at the core of his mission.

“My true motivation comes from my friend’s mom,” he said.

A lifelong friend of Jackson’s, mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, and Glynn said this truly affected her son.

“I felt like I couldn’t help her very much,” Jackson said.

So when the opportunity came along to do something for cancer patients, Jackson jumped on it.

If you would like to donate pop tabs to Jackson, you can contact his mother at syhaja @msn.com.

2011-09-15 / Lifestyles

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