Bianca of Kingston, N. H., is one of those ordinary sixth-graders who loves her dog; in her case, a Bouvier des Flandres named Bear. “He looks like a teddy bear, ” she says. But this 11-year-old girl’s love for her dog—and other dogs and, well, people and the world—motivates her to do some extraordinary things.

Bianca is a student leader in the Children Against Mines Program (CHAMPS), a thirteen-year-old Marshall Legacy Institute (MLI) initiative, in which children sponsor mine-detection dogs. As part of one of the most successful CHAMPS campaigns to date, Bianca can proudly say she’s doing something great for the world. “It’s just amazing—just the little things you do…can help so many people and so many animals,” she says.

It’s safe to say that, in general, children love animals. Why else would so many kids’ movies have four-legged stars, after all? Maybe…

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