Egan eighth-grader dedicates fundraiser to saving elephants

Tusk Fundraiser” width=
Courtesy of Shaye Chirotarrab
Uma Chirotarrab, left, hosts a fundraiser in downtown Los Altos last year to help save elephants with her friend Emmi Ben Tovim. This year, she plans to hold the annual event Dec. 7.

For the fifth year in a row, eighth-grader Uma Chirotarrab is slated to hold a fundraiser in downtown Los Altos to help save elephants at risk of poaching in Africa.

The Egan Junior High School student plans to raise money for Tusk, a charity focused on African wildlife conservation, through an all-day fundraiser Dec. 7. Each year, Uma and her friends set up tables downtown and distribute hundreds of free cookies, baked by her mother, Shaye.

As she hands out the cookies, Uma educates passerby about the plight of the elephants. Last year, she raised $2,650.56 and hopes to surpass that figure this year.

“I’ve always loved elephants since I was young. I don’t really know why I have that passion towards them,” Uma said. “I’ve just always loved them.”

Starting in second grade, Uma would ask for money to donate to Tusk in lieu of birthday gifts. Then in 2015, when she was in fourth grade, she began holding a fundraiser downtown.

This year, she plans to set up shop at 7:30 a.m. in front of Sethi and Starbucks on Main Street.

For more information on Tusk, visit

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