Shred Support

Silver Spring, MD (Kemp Mill neighborhood)
Email: (contacts:  Dina and Amy)

“Shred Support is a shredding service located in the Kemp Mill neighborhood of Silver Spring, MD that is committed to the employment of people with disabilities.  When you use Shred Support, your documents will be confidentially destroyed and recycled.  Our shred team is friendly and professional. Just ask us for a reference at any time or see our testimonials.”

My Personal Connection:

I know the two founders, Uriel and Jacob, from our summers together in the Tikvah Program at Camp Ramah in New England.  This Jewish summer camp includes campers with intellectual and developmental disabilities and offers a vocational training program.  Uriel and Jacob, two talented 20-somethings with Down Syndrome, have participated in the vocational training program for over 5 years, where they worked in the camp’s mail, package and fax center.  Outside of camp, Jacob has worked at a UPS store and Uriel at the University of Maryland Hillel in their food service program.  I have continued to be in touch with both young men and their families as they have explored longer term employment.  Both also participate in the camping movements year round virtual vocational training and socialization program which was created during the COVID pandemic.

From the Website:

It’s estimated that one third of the workforce has been working from home since March 2020. Couple that with all who have used the time at home to sort & organize…and that’s a lot of documents piling up!  Shred Support is here to help! Your documents will be confidentially destroyed and recycled (yes, Shred Support is more than just friendly – it’s Eco-Friendly too).

Just 37 percent of working-age people with disabilities have a job, compared to 77 percent of people without disabilities. This staggering statistic represents over 12.5 million working-age people with disabilities who want to work and who are a valuable asset to the workforce.  Shred Support aims to smash that statistic by employing adults with disabilities who are ready to get to work and be a productive member of the community.  

Founders and owners Jacob and Uriel have a track record of reliability & exceptional work ethic. They have each been involved in self-directed programming since 2018 and bring these qualities & professionalism to each task.  

How Does Shred Support Work?

-Fill out a work request form and someone will reply within 2-3 business days.  A Shred Support Specialist will be assigned to you and we will set up a drop-off date and address.

-Bring your paper in a shred-support bag, your own bag, or a box to the drop-off point on the assigned date. (We cannot shred folders, CDs, plastic envelopes, binder clips, adhesive-backed labels, polaroid pictures).

-We will weigh the shred order so we can determine the cost. (Pricing:  $1.50 per pound for new customers and $1.25 for returning customers)

-Your shredding will be destroyed confidentially and then recycled.

-We will send you your invoice which will also be your confirmation that the shred job has been completed.

Lessons Learned/Challenges:

-It has been challenging finding similar disability run shredding businesses with whom to consult; that said we found one in Houston and the mom who runs it was incredibly helpful.

-Need for business and legal advice regarding business structure and joint proprietorship

-Measuring success and becoming profitable (plans include feasibility study and 5-year business plan).  

-Consider seeking investors

-Importance of maintaining working equipment

-We would like to have a space for Uriel and Jacob to work together – in an ideal world outside of both homes.  However, Covid is still too prevalent, so we are hopeful for a space in one of the homes so they can at least work together.

– We would like to explore options for better marketing – maybe a college student intern.  This would include social media as well as targeted emails.

– Once we have a bigger space, we would like to invest in larger and more reliable equipment.

– Sometime in the next year, we would like to seek out business contracts.  We would purchase locked shred containers that offices would drop their “to-be’shredded” papers into and then they would call for a pick-up when the container becomes full.  We would have a different pay structure for clients with contracts with us.

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