Westborough students help to raise funds for World Wildlife Federation

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By Bonnie Adams, Government Editor

Young animal advocates (front, l to r) Clara Buttiglieri, Jhaymie Tungol and (back, l to r) Meghan Kincaid, Sophia Stilla, Julia French and Cynthia Zhang organized a fundraiser for the World Wildlife Federation at the Hastings School. (Photo/Bonnie Adams)

Westborough – Like most kids, a group of young girls at the Hastings Elementary School loves animals and loves learning about them. When they read a book about animals on the brink of extinction, they were saddened; then they decided to do something to help. They convinced their school population to participate in a special fundraiser, Animal Appreciation Day, to benefit the World Wildlife Federation (WWF). And by doing so, they raised $430 for the cause.

The six girls – Clara Buttiglieri, Julia French, Meghan Kincaid, Sophia Stilla, Jhaymie Tungol and Cynthia Zhang – are all students in Kristen Robertson's third-grade class.

Meghan explained that the project got its start after several of the girls discussed the book about endangered animals.

“We were talking about how bad it is for the animals to get hunted down,” she said.

As part of their class work, the kids are learning about persuasive writing. So, using those skills, they sent letters to Principal Leigh Becker to see if she would allow them to hold a fundraiser for the WWF. After Becker agreed, the girls put together a plan.

“We researched facts so that we could tell everyone about the animals,” Sophia said. “We then made posters to put around school.”

“And we made an announcement over the PA [system], too,” Jhaymie added.

The girls asked their classmates and adults at the school to wear animal clothing on April 8. They also encouraged everyone to bring in either a stuffed animals or picture of a pet. Envelopes were put in the different classrooms to collect voluntary donations.

“The girls did a great job on this project,” Becker said. “They worked very hard and even gave up some of their recess time for some of the planning. It was great to see them using what they have learned in class and getting everyone excited about their project. ”