Local girl raises funds to help zoo project

September 9, 2020   ·   0 Comments

By Kinjal Dagli Shah

Six-year-old Charlotte Killman can’t wait to see the new Orangutan outdoor habitat at the Toronto Zoo. As a participant in the Toronto Oasis ZooRun, she is helping raise funds for the project.
The virtual race, and her love for animals, has kept this Grade 1 student busy this summer. As she trains to run in the race, Killman has beat her own best time by completing 1 kilometre in under 6 minutes.
“I learned about the Orangutans by watching the TV show Wild Kratts. I don’t like people cutting down the forest and destroying their habitat,” said Charlotte, adding, “My mom told me about the Toronto Zoo Oasis Run and how they are running to fundraise money for the Orangutan Habitat Project.”
Charlotte made two videos telling people about her cause, showing her training and asking for donations.
“I posted her videos to social media. Since Aug. 2, she has run every single day for 1 km along with her dad, and sometimes with her sister and myself,” said her mother, Meghan. “Neighbours have even started to cheer her on as she runs. We keep track of her times and record it. I post a photo of her daily run times to social media with the link to her fundraising.”
The St. Patrick Catholic Elementary School student runs from her house to the Schomberg Library every day. She’s motivated by seeing people donate to her page and knowing that she is making a difference.
“Every time she gets a new donation she wants to get even more for the orangutans. We started with a goal of $200, then quickly had to change to $500, $750, and $1,000 as the goals kept getting surpassed. She can’t believe how much her family and friends have supported her,” said Meghan.
Charlotte is thrilled that she has a project that everyone in her family is involved in. She loves trying to break her personal best time, even if that sometimes means waking up at 5:30 a.m. to run with her dad Wesley before he goes to work. “She works out with her dad and his friends outside, and by dancing every day. She is a highland dancer,” said Meghan.
Charlotte’s parents we are proud and supportive of her goals.
“We hope that after the run in September, this experience will have inspired her to have a lifelong interest in fitness as well as have given her a first-hand understanding that she can, is, and should make a positive difference in the world through her actions. We will always encourage her to continue to ‘be the change she wants to see in the world’,” said Meghan.
As for Charlotte, she can’t wait to see the finished orangutan outdoor habitat next year at the Toronto Zoo, and know that she played a part in helping to give them a new and better home.
To donate to Charlotte’s page, please visit:



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