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Connie Britton shows her philanthropic side as she turns 50

Connie Britton's Nashville co-star Charles Esten was among those wishing her a happy 50th birthday on Monday (06Mar17).

Connie Britton marked her 50th birthday by creating a fundraising page to raise money for an education fund.

The Nashville star celebrated reaching the landmark age on Monday (06Mar17), and shared a snap of herself wearing a sparkly birthday tiara while being presented with a giant cake on her Instagram page.

Alongside the picture, Connie explained to fans that she had decided to set up a campaign to raise funds for International Rescue Committee (IRC) to start a new education fund.

"Y'all today is my birthday. And it's a big one," she wrote. "I am left feeling blessed and also inspired to give back. I always like to give on my birthday because as far as I'm concerned, I'm the one who wants to say thanks.

"So this year, since it's a big one, I've created a fundraising page on CrowdRise, my birthday wish page. I've joined with the International Rescue Committee to create an education fund. You can read all about it on the link in my bio. And if you're inspired to give, well I'll just feel so honoured. And so grateful. Thank you for helping to make every day of this life such a gift."

Earlier in the post, Connie told her followers that she was "overwhelmed" with messages from her nearest and dearest on her special day.

"I could not feel more grateful for the amazing people in my life who shape me and that includes all of you. I have been overwhelmed by your birthday wishes," she said.

Connie's fundraising page has already raised $14,586 (£11,980), with the actress and mother-of-one going into more detail about why she decided to start the campaign.

"My parents always felt the greatest gift they could give me was an education, and they did just that," she began. "I believe the same for my son, who is now 6. Whenever I look into his face and see the innate thrill he has when he discovers something new, I am overjoyed for him. And I also see the faces of kids who aren't as fortunate as he is. And for my birthday, the idea that children who have been through hell can have a shot at feeling cared for and worthy of learning and creating a life for themselves, well, that gives me hope. Hope it will you too."

Connie's birthday was also celebrated by her Nashville co-star Charles Esten and actresses Carla Gugino and Jennifer Esposito, who posted felicitation messages on their social media accounts.

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