Cell Out: Lake Orion students go without phones for good cause

Students went without cell phones for charity to promote face to face interaction.
Imagine high school students giving up their phones for the entire day - that's what happened at Lake Orion High School Friday.

It's all part of a good cause, at the Cell Out for Soldiers students donated a dollar to the military and opted for face-to-face communication. 

The drive raised about $2,800 for Cell Phone for Soldiers, which collects used cell phones and sells them to recycling firms using the money to buy calling cards for soldiers overseas.

Senior Austin Jones was one of the students who hatched the plan.

"Our original idea was to get back to the face to face connection," Jones said. "Get off your phones and talk to people. With social media and us being so addicted to our cell phones, we are trying to get back to that.

"We tied in the soldiers aspect to give people motivation and initiative to do this."

A donation of $1 will be given for each cell phone for each cell phone turned in for the day with the goal of raising more than $2,000 for charity,

Local businesses got involved as well and donated money. About 1,800 phones were turned in.

"Every cell phone is safe, secure and guarded," said student Collin Brooks. "They are going to be handed back at the end of the day by student council members."

Principal Steve Hawley said he wasn't sure the event would take off like it did.

"There's always apprehension especially with the attachments to cell phones that we all have," he said. "We underestimated our students and we shouldn't have. They have gone above and beyond, It's a great charity."

One student, Blair said the Cell-Out was a little difficult to get used to at first.

"The hardest part for me was feeling like I lost something," she said. "I would check my pockets and there would be no phone. Then I realized I (Cell-ed Out)." 

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