Hauppauge, NY- State Senator Lee M. Zeldin (R, C, I- Shirley) announced today that he is kicking off a drive to collect cell phones for soldiers. Zeldin (Above, Center), a captain in the U.S. Army Reserves, said that his office in the State Office Building in Hauppauge (250 Veteran's Memorial Hwy. Hauppauge, NY), will serve as a collection site for the Cell Phones for Soldiers project.
Cell Phones for Soldiers was founded by teenagers, Robbie and Brittany Bergquist, from Norwell, Mass., with $21 of their own money. Since then, the registered 501c3 non-profit organization has raised almost $2 million in donations and distributed more than 500,000 prepaid calling cards to soldiers serving overseas.
The phones are sent to ReCellular, which pays Cell Phones for Soldiers for each donated phone – enough to provide an hour of talk time to soldiers abroad.
“As a military veteran, I know that one of the most important things for morale during deployment is to be able to connect with your family. Of an estimated 130 million cell phones being replaced per year, the majority of those phones are either discarded or stuffed in a drawer. We should turn these phones into a life line between the men and women serving abroad and their families back home,” said Senator Zeldin.
In addition to the collection box at the State Office Building in Hauppauge, additional collection locations will be added in the coming weeks.