More than 5 million children are in need of assistance from the three-year-long civil war in Syria, where one in three children have been shot at, hit or kicked and 7,000 children have been killed, according to savethechildren.org.
Anna Courson, 7, of Russell saw the conditions children are subjected to through an NBC special on the "Lost Children of Syria" and wanted to help.
With the help of her family, friends, neighbors, her Dance Express family, social media and her parents' co-workers Courson raised $250.18 with a Pennies for Peace project and donated all the funds to Save the Children.
Pennies for peace
Anna Courson, 7, of Russell collected $251 to help children in Syria through the organization Save the Children.
Not bad for a seven-year-old.
Courson said she wanted to help after seeing the conditions of children in Syria "because I wanted them to get homes."
The young humanitarian enjoys studying science at Russell Elementary School and wants to be a veterinarian when she grows up.
It all started when Anna caught a segment of the news that was spotlighting the children effected by Syrian civil war.
"It affected her even though she's only seven years old," her father Steve Courson said.
The program offered a number of ways to help and Anna chose Pennies for Peace. She made fliers with her mother Katie Courson and they handed them out to friends and family and set up donation boxes around town.
And then the pennies came pouring in. Some people dropped a couple $20 bills in the boxes along with some notes of encouragement. Neighbors helped out and the pennies were even coming into Steve's mailbox at his work.
"We are extremely proud of Anna and her compassion for others at such a young age," Steve Courson said.
"Teaching children that every penny counts and every life near and far is important is a lesson she has embraced and we are so thankful for that," Katie Courson said. "Many thanks go out to all those who took the time to find pennies and get them to Anna!"
For more information, visit www.savethechildren.org.