Sports Medal Recycling

Coronavirus Update 11/9/2020: We are at capacity for what we can currently process for medal recycling, and we ask that you hold any incoming shipments until January 2021. At this time our volunteers are focused on processing our current backlog of shipments received (thank you!) while maintaining safe social distancing. We expect this will be a record-setting year for package shipments and deliveries during the holiday season. Waiting until 2021 will help ensure your packages arrive safely and without damage. Thank you for your cooperation! We will post any changes and updates on our website and social media feeds.

We recycle extra and unwanted road race, endurance event, sport and academic medals and use the proceeds to make donations for charity road race bibs and endurance events with fundraising minimums. Help keep recyclable metal, textiles, plastic and cardboard out of landfills and help support some great 501c3 nonprofit organizations.

Learn more about us and see the answers to our most frequently asked questions here.

Sports Medal Recycling is a group of athletes that recycle unwanted and extra medals from road races and sport events/competitions. We use the proceeds for our charity fundraising minimums for road race bibs or event entries.  We can also recycle academic and achievement medals.  Medals can be sent in at any time: we process shipments year-round.   Since 2016 we have recycled over 100,000 pounds of materials.

We welcome individuals, groups, race directors and event organizers to send in sport and academic medals they no longer want or will not use for recycling. There is no charge to recycle with us.

We welcome to you send in extra, unused, or no-longer-wanted medals from any sport, including: road races, triathlons, obstacle course events, skiing, rowing, swimming, volleyball, wrestling, baseball, rugby, skating, kid’s races, bike rides, 5Ks, 10Ks, age group awards, mud runs, fencing, relays, cheerleading, senior games, virtual races, collegiate medals, etc.  Bottle opener or key chain medals are welcome!  Academic medals are welcome too!  We have processed medals for honor societies, reading awards, etc. NO TROPHIES OR PLAQUES PLEASE.

WE ARE CURRENTLY AT CAPACITY AND ASK THAT YOU WAIT UNTIL JANUARY 2021 TO SEND IN MEDALS. STAY TUNED- CHECK IN WITH US ON OUR WEBSITE; ON SOCIAL MEDIA; OR SUBSCRIBE TO OUR E-NEWSLETTER FOR UPDATES.

DON’T BE SCAMMED! We’ve found a few copycat fake groups using our name and text from our website and social media posts.  Our address is in South Attleboro, MA, United States.  Any group that sounds like our name with a different address (in the USA or another country) is a fraudulent group or a scam.

Our Process

This is a complete recycling program.  We recycle the cardboard shipping boxes, and any newspaper, paper or cardboard used in shipping.  We recycle the metal from the medals.  We send the ribbons to textile recycling.  All plastic bags, air mailer bags and bubble wrap go to plastics recycling.

PLEASE DO NOT send the following items as we cannot process them:

  • NO TROPHIES.  Please check out the Nationwide Trophy Recycling Program. We are not affiliated with them, but we have contacted them and they are a valid and trusted resource.
  • DO NOT SEND: Plaques of any kind; medals or awards made of glass, wood, ceramic, foam, or plastic; banners (cloth or plastic). Unfortunately they will go in the trash.
  • Do you have a rectangular ribbon with a small piece of cardboard or paper on the back? Do you have a long ribbon with a show ribbon bow (possibly with a plastic circle pin in the center)? Unfortunately, these are not recyclable in our area.
  • Do not send in the plastic cases and foam inserts some medals come in. These are not recyclable in our area and will be thrown out.  
  • While recycling is our goal, the safety of our volunteers comes first.  If you have medals that were damaged or ruined by fire, flood, mold, mildew, or pets- if the medals aren’t safe for you to handle or keep, then they’re not safe for us to handle either.  Please dispose of these.

Shipping Tips:

For packing: if the medals do not completely fill the box you’re using, use bubble wrap, air bags, paper, cardboard or newspaper (we can recycle all of these). Do not use Styrofoam or packaging peanuts for packing- we cannot recycle them (and they get crushed in shipment from the weight of the medals).  Medals do not need to be wrapped individually- the key is they just need to not shake or slide around the box.  We find this damages the boxes in transit. 

If you have leftover cloth bags (cinch, drawstring or tote) from events or races, you can use the bag in place of newspaper or bubble wrap to ship the medals. This actually helps us as we use the cinch bags to transport the ribbons to textile recycling!

Cheapest shipping options: USPS Flat Rate boxes (one rate for up to 70 pounds).  These boxes are available for free at your local post office or via an online order, and are available in small, medium and large flat rate sizes.  Please carefully tape the boxes, including all openings, to ensure the box doesn’t break in transit due to the weight of the medals.

Ship as a group: we’ve had workplaces, gyms, running clubs and teams collect medals together and ship them in one box to save on postage.

About our Fundraising Efforts- Where the Proceeds Go

We regularly make donations or fundraise ourselves to participate in events like charity rides or to participate in road races.  Some events we participate in require a fundraising minimum for a race bib or event entry.  If we are not actively fundraising for an event, then we donate to other athlete’s fundraising efforts.

You can view screenshot examples of donations made to athlete fundraising efforts here. 

We only make donations to fundraising efforts that support registered 501(c)3 nonprofits in the United States only.  We do not make any donations to requests to help individuals.


Subscribe to our mailing list!

We now have a e-newsletter!  We will send out updates on our recycling efforts, our charitable donations, our future growth, and more.  We will never share or sell your personal information with anyone.