Created: 02/27/2014 7:19 PM KAALtv.com
By: Dan Conradt
(ABC 6 NEWS) -- Never underestimate the power of a penny.
"A penny can be the difference between life or death in this situation," said Ellis middle school seventh grader McKenzie Pelletier.
So imagine if you had 200,000 of them.
“Our goal is $2,000 this year," said Ellis student council advisor Eric Vaughn.
"Pennies for Patients is a fund raising campaign for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society."
When the kids at Austin’s Ellis middle school were looking for a cause to support, they drew on real life.
"We had students in the building that had leukemia," student council advisor Eric Vaughn told us.
“It makes it seem more personal when you think there could be kids in your school with a disease like that," said Ellis 7th grader Sarah Bachmeier.
“It gives us awareness of what the family is having to deal with, and it helps us to give them support," added 7th grader McKenzie Pelletier.
“And it makes you want to help more, I guess," Sarah Bachmeier told us.
And in a school setting, that's an important lesson.
"How do you foster people giving back to the community, and feeling that sense of empathy to want to give," said student council advisor Eric Vaughn.
“It makes you feel good about yourself to know you're helping. Even though we're still kids that we can still make a difference," 7th grader Sarah Bachmeier explained.
“And the kids are going to grow up to be adults, and they will help their adult peers," Eric Vaughn said.
“I feel like no matter how much you donate, it's still making an impact," said 12 year old McKenzie Pelletier.
To learn how you can help the students, visit their website: https://www.austin.k12.mn.us/ellis