11-year-old boy runs his own recycling company and is changing the world one can at a time

Thank you Ryan for everything you do for the environment. You are such an inspiration!


We speak a lot about changing the world for the better, but not many of us actually do anything to make that happen. The climate change is a real thing and a threat for the planet and humanity, yet, we don’t pay much attention to our personal acts which lead for the problem to grow bigger and bigger.

When we throw a can on the street instead of recycling it, we say, “Ok, well, it’s just a can.” But when millions of us do the same, those cans and the rest of the waste we leave behind end up polluting the ground as well as the waters.

Ryan Hickman is an 11 year old boy who was named “2017 Citizen of the Year” by his hometown of San Juan Capistrano. CNN Young Wonder placed him on the list of “top 15 kids changing the world,” and he found himself on the Reader’s Digest 2020 List of Kids of the Decade Changing the World.

If you wonder why, it’s because he really is making a huge change. Since he was 3.5 years old, Ryan has recycled 1 million cans and bottles.

Speaking to Power Positivity about how it all started, this young environmentalist says: “It was fun and I saw it was making a difference in the environment. Every single can and bottle that I recycle is not ending up in oceans, landfills, lakes, rivers, reservoirs, or for animals to eat it, get sick and die.”

Although Ryan is busy studying, he always finds the time to recycle. “What keeps me motivated to keep recycling is just getting letters and emails from all over the world telling me thanks and keep up the recycling,” he says. “If millions and millions of people recycle just one bottle or can, it’ll be millions and millions of bottles or cans being recycled. So, it’s really easy to recycle,” Ryan adds.

According to ABC News, Ryan is saving money for a trash truck. For that purpose, as well as for his future education, he and his dad, who set up Ryan’s Recycling, already raised $10,000.

Thank you Ryan for everything you do for the environment. You are such an inspiration!