Dutchtown teachers donate mascara wands to wildlife refuge

Darian Graivshark
Lindsay Seely next to her classroom donation box.

Even if you're not a fan of recycling, how could you say no to helping cute little animals?

Dutchtown High Environmental Science teacher, Lindsay Seely, joined the Wands for Wildlife program for the Appalachian Wildlife Refuge. Wands for Wildlife collects old mascara wands to remove fly eggs and larva from the fur of wildlife.

Seely got her inspiration from a student's parent, Nina Connelly. Nina sent out an email about a year ago looking for people interested in collecting mascara wands, too. Seely jumped on board immediately.

"I joined the program because I really support conservation. So, anything that has to do with wildlife and the environment is something I want to be a part of," Seely said.

Right now, Seely has collected about 15 wands since the school year has started. She keeps a collection box in her classroom where students can donate their old wands.

"There are actually three other teachers collecting wands too. Nicole Arnold, Ronell Cefalu, and Delaina Payne. Dutchtown Middle School has some teachers collecting there too. We plan on making one big donation at some point," Seely said.

Donors must wash the wands with warm, soapy water before they are mailed, which removes residual mascara. Mascara wands work well for wildlife because the bristles are close together.

Appalachian Wildlife Refuge does not encourage people to simply go out and buy wands, but to donate wands that they have already used. Their purpose for that is to recycle and re-purpose the wands and help the environment.

If you want to donate, but don't have any old wands, you can do so by donating food, supplies, or funds. Visit for more information and various donation links.

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