When seven-year-old Helaina Morgan's mother told her that a local family couldn't afford to buy ice cream and cookies, Helaina immediately took action.
The Syracuse, New York, Grade 2 student sent a letter to three-year-old Essence Fry — and enclosed $10 from her piggy bank.
"Hi Essence: Here is $10 from me. You can go to the grocery stor [sic] and buy wat you want. I like ice cream and sprinkls. Sincerely: Helaina," she wrote.
Essence's mother, Meghan, had been featured in a Syracuse Post-Standard story about working families who need to use food stamps. Moved by the article, Helaina's mother, Roberta, decided to send Meghan and Essence a gift card to buy extra groceries.
"When I told her that this family usually didn't have extra money to buy ice cream, cookies or gummies, she actually gasped, then asked me if we could bring them some food," Roberta told the Post-Standard.
Roberta explained that they couldn't just show up at a stranger's home with food. Helaina asked if she could give them money instead. When Roberta agreed and suggested a $5 donation, Helaina doubled the amount.
"But she absolutely insisted on $10 from her own [piggy] bank," Roberta said.
Helaina's generous deed won over Post-Standard readers.
"We are seeing a child who is learning from parents who are good examples of what people should be like, who are givers and not takers. Children learn from their parents and how they are taught is reflected in everything they do. I would imagine that this is just the beginning of what we will hear about Helaina. Thank you mom, dad and Helaina for being the kind, caring people that you are!" wrote cogirl2.
"What a great story! The parents of this little girl are doing a great job as parents! Warmed my heart to read this! You made me smile this morning, Helaina!" wrote totfedup11.
"This is the first time she's done anything like this," Roberta told HuffPost. "But it didn't surprise me. She's always cared very much about her friends. And she's getting to the age where it's time for her to realize that there are others out there who aren't as fortunate as us."
"My husband, Jim, and I hope that she always stays the thoughtful little girl that she is," she told the Post-Standard.