These elementary students raised over $20,000 to build classrooms in Kenya

Elementary students at seven Tacoma Public Schools came together to raise money for classrooms in Kenya.

(CNN)A group of elementary school students hopes to end poverty and allow all children to go to school, no matter their circumstances.

That's what inspired fourth- and fifth-graders in Tacoma, Washington to raise money for students in Kenya.
Leah Varkey, 10, is a fourth-grader at Northeast Tacoma Elementary School. She asked her family and friends to donate, wrote a speech to raise money at her church, and raised more than $1,500 by herself.
She wants to help children of lesser means have a better future.
    "Children in Kenya are not able to go to school because they have household chores. They live on the countryside and there's no schools near them," Leah told CNN. "The best way to end child poverty is education."
    "Imagine if you have never had a school, but other people are helping you to build a classroom for you," Leah Varkey said.
    Seven schools came together to raise $10,000 for an education service project. The students learned about local and global problems and chose the lack of education access in Kenya, where the money raised will go toward building classrooms.
    The schools will give the money to WE, an organization that empowers sustainable community services. The organization will pick a community, build and equip classrooms, and train teachers.
    Aidan Oehling (left) and Jack Andrew (right) were inspired to help Kenyan kids who don't have access to education.
    The students raised $20,584 in 13 days -- enough to build two classrooms.
    Jack Andrew, 11, said he was inspired by the number of people who wanted to help. He raised $2,100 through fund-raising packets he distributed.
    Providing Kenyan kids with education and ending poverty are what inspired Aidan Oehling, 11, to send fliers and emails and make phone calls throughout the community.
    "A lot of kids here who have the education are complaining about school, but when you think about it, they're [Kenyan children] very happy to have school," Aidan said. "It kind of is life changing, when you think about it."
      Toni Stallman is a social worker at Northeast Tacoma and Browns Point schools. She told CNN that the big takeaway for the students is learning they don't have to be famous or rich to make a difference.
      "I feel like they all are leaving this project feeling very, very empowered and uplifted and proud," she said.