6-year-old's birthday Kickstarter raises $2,000 for Syrian children

Anna Puopolo, 6, asked family and friends to support a Kickstarter campaign for Syrian children rather than give her gifts for her birthday in January.

Six-year-old Anna Puopolo is an entrepreneur with two YouTube channels

Anna Puopolo, 6, tells CBC K-W's The Morning Edition host Craig Norris about why she asked people to help Syrian children instead of giving her birthday presents. (CBC News)

While for most children a sixth birthday means sending out invitations, eating cake and opening presents, but Cambridge, Ont.'s Anna Puopolo decided to forgo the traditional birthday wish list this year and instead help children affected by the civil war in Syria.

"I figured I'm a lucky girl and I have tons of toys already," Puopolo told The Morning Edition host Craig Norris.

"But there's other kids in Syria and other adults in Syria that need shelter food and water," said Anna who turned six at the beginning of January.

With the help of her parents, Puopolo launched a $2,000 Kickstarter campaign that reached its goal in the first week.

Explaining the Syrian tragedy

Anna's dad Joseph Puopolo said other parents were initially surprised at the request for no presents but eventually came around. 

The tragedy of the Syrian war can be difficult for any adult to understand let alone a six-year-old.

"We just tried to talk about it from a human perspective and make her appreciate the things that she had," explained Joseph, who said discovering bombs were being dropped on hospitals left a lasting impression on his daughter. 

She said she felt "worried because my mum works at a hospital," Anna told Norris. 

Anna's shows

This isn't the first time the first-grader has seen success on social media. Puopolo is the host of Anna's Show on YouTube and her startup, Kidviewed, where she reviews books and toys, is described as Yelp for kids.

Her dad said authors have reached out asking her to review their work. Anna is also being mentored by female entrepreneurs, has a team building her social media application and has caught the interest of venture capitalists. 

When was asked by Norris if she had ever heard of the term entrepreneur, she was quick to reply: "No. I was five years old when I started," said Puopolo.