Craig Kielburger
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A humanitarian, social activist and best-selling author, Craig, co-founder of Free The Children and co-founder of ME to WE, has inspired a generation of young people to be active global change-makers. Craig has received national and international recognition, including being named as one of the youngest recipients of the Order of Canada.

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Ideal Audiences:

Student Leadership



Keynote Topics:

Inspiring for all audiences

In their two decades of humanitarian work, Craig and Marc have visited dozens of countries, meeting people from all walks of life. They have learned from some of the greatest spiritual, political and social leaders of our time, including Mother Teresa and Nelson Mandela, and have shared simple meals with families struggling in the world’s slums and war zones. Along the way, they have discovered a simple but profound truth—that real fulfillment starts with having the courage to reach out and help others.

It all begins when we make the shift from me to we. In this speech, Craig and/or Marc will help you discover the Me to We philosophy, described in their New York Times bestseller, Me to We: Finding Meaning in a Material World.

Tangible takeaways:

  • Learn how to create your legacy while meeting the demands of a busy life.
  • Achieve a deeper sense of gratitude for life’s simple pleasures and moments.
  • Find inspiration in the teachings of the world’s heroes and take your first step to making lasting change.
  • Equip yourself with practical tools for living the Me to We philosophy through daily choices and actions.
  • Take steps toward a greater sense of purpose and fulfilment in the workplace, in your relationships and in your family.

For all those who help to shape children’s lives: parents, caregivers, educators, communities

Today, more than ever, the world needs your kids. Through their work with Free The Children, an international charity driven by youth, Craig and Marc have empowered more than two million young leaders to take action to better their local and global communities.

Based on their international bestseller, The World Needs Your Kid: Raising Children Who Care and Contribute, this speech will provide key insights on guiding children to be compassionate and engaged global citizens. Their research is based on over a thousand interviews with experts on mentorship and early childhood development, and will help you guide young people through rites of passage, address materialism and foster empathy.

Tangible takeaways:

  • Learn how to help children realize their own unique gifts and discover the causes they care about.
  • Explore the Three C’s for raising socially conscious kids: Compassion, Courage and Community.
  • Discover how everyday actions can have a lasting influence on a child—resulting in new friendships, improved grades and higher self-esteem.
  • Learn how to introduce service-based learning programs into schools.

Thought-provoking and informative for business leaders

For a new generation of business leaders and social entrepreneurs, making an impact means more than the bottom line. As the founders of Me to We, an innovative social enterprise, Craig and/or Marc will share insight on how to infuse your company with a sense of purpose, elevate your brand, differentiate your products and inspire your employees.

In this speech, you’ll discover how to celebrate the positive impact that your company and employees bring to the world. Me to We has partnered with leading companies such as KPMG and Virgin Atlantic to build robust corporate citizenship programs, resulting in more engaged employees and clients and an improved brand reputation.

Tangible takeaways:

  • Highlight your brand’s social impact through storytelling, and celebrate this impact with your employees and customers.
  • Discover how to attract and retain the best talent and inspire employees by infusing your workplace with purpose.
  • Learn how the Kielburgers built one of the largest social media followings in the world and how to connect people to amplify your message.
  • Gain insight on communicating with the millennial generation of employees and consumers who seek to make an impact through their work and purchases.

A 3-4 hour workshop for parents and youth age 8+

In this workshop for parents and youth, Craig and/or Marc Kielburger share ground-breaking lessons on nurturing children to care about the world around them.

Based on the Kielburgers’ international bestseller, The World Needs Your Kid: Raising Children Who Care and Contribute, this workshop experience will provide you with practical tips for raising socially responsible children, strengthening family bonds and changing the world—all at the same time.

The workshop experience:

  1. Begins with an inspirational keynote address for the whole family.
  2. Two simultaneous break-out sessions—one for parents, led by Craig or Marc Kielburger, and one for children, led by expert youth facilitators who help children identify their unique gifts and passions.
  3. Wrap-up session where children and parents share action plans for a family volunteer activity.
An Unconventional Education: How I Learned about Leadership from Oprah, Nelson Mandela and My Grandma

Craig Kielburger and his brother Marc learned to lead at the ages of twelve and seventeen when they founded a global movement against child slavery. Part of the vanguard of young entrepreneurs, they didn’t have formal training in how to build an organization. But they knew how to innovate and take risks, and they benefited from the mentorship and friendship of powerful, world-renowned leaders. The lessons Craig gleaned from these deep relationships, as well as his own experiences leading a global organization, are the basis for this speech.

In this engaging, interactive keynote, Craig delivers actionable leadership lessons as he weaves the tale of his journey from middle school kid to leader of a global enterprise. His savvy insights and advice are peppered with accounts of the extraordinary leaders who have coached and mentored him. But that’s not all. This speech takes audience interaction to a whole new level by letting the audience choose the stories they most want to hear. Whether it’s an anecdote involving President Clinton or Kid President, Ed Bradley or Richard Branson, Mohammad Ali or Magic Johnson, Mother Teresa or one of the many top CEOs who have shared their wisdom, attendees of every age will benefit from these entertaining insights.

Featuring Leadership Lessons from:



“Craig Kielburger’s closing presentation at Catholic Health Partners’ 2014 Governance & Leadership Symposium was engaging, uplifting, powerful, energizing and tailored on message to support key aspects of CHP’s transformation to assure our mission, values and strategic vision of the future.

“Craig Kielburger’s presentation was terrific—not only was it a fascinating and well-delivered story, but it was ‘on-theme’ by talking about how some of his innovative ideas (i.e. social entrepreneurship, We Day) were brought to life.”

“To date, Craig has shared his moving and educational messages to our clients, field sales groups and employees on 14 separate occasions. Each time, Craig greatly exceeds our expectations and seldom have our events created the level of positive feedback and excitement that we have seen with these events. Perhaps, more importantly, at every event Craig has made himself available to spend time with each audience member who desired to speak to him after each presentation.”

“Craig Kielburger was extremely well received by our audience. He is a great speaker and even more a great person. Remarkable—I would highly recommend for future presentations.”

“Our guests were moved and inspired by Craig the other night at our annual Black Tie Dinner. Many commented that he was the best speaker we’ve had yet—and this was our 57th year! The difference, beyond his incredible energy and his ability to connect, was that he took the time to listen to our needs for the evening and tailor his comments specifically to this audience of insurance executives and brokers. It was an evening that many of us will remember for years to come.”

Full Biography

Craig Kielburger is an internationally acclaimed speaker, social entrepreneur and New York Times bestselling author. He is the co-founder of a family of organizations dedicated to shifting the world from ‘me’ to ‘we.’

In 1995 at 12 years of age he co-founded Free The Children. Today, he remains a full-time volunteer for the organization. What began as a group of kids working out of a garage now has more than 2.3 million young people annually involved in its programs.

Free The Children works in eight developing countries, providing a holistic and sustainable development model, including education, clean water, health care, food security, and alternative income programs. The organization has built over 1,000 schools and school rooms, and provided permanent sources of clean water to more than one million beneficiaries.

In North America and the United Kingdom, WE Schools & WE Day provide comprehensive service learning programs to 10,000 schools. Every year 200,000 students earn their free ticket through service projects to attend 14 We Day stadium celebrations. The event brings together some of the world’s greatest icons of social change and celebrities such as Elie Wiesel, Archbishop Tutu, Malala Yousafzai, Sir Richard Branson, Prince Harry, Jennifer Hudson, Demi Lovato, Jennifer Lopez and Magic Johnson.

Alongside his brother Marc, Craig is also the co-founder of ME to WE, an innovative social enterprise that supports the work of Free The Children by providing socially conscious products and experiences. It employs over 1,400 artisan women in developing countries, who produce ME to WE products available in thousands of stores. The social enterprise also operates international volunteer hosting programs welcoming youth, families, and corporate clients such as KPMG and Virgin Atlantic.

Craig has published 12 books. He and his brother co-author three weekly syndicated columns on global affairs and socially conscious living printed in over thirty newspapers.

Craig holds a degree in peace and conflict studies from the University of Toronto and is the youngest-ever graduate of the Kellogg-Schulich Executive MBA program. Voted by Canadians in a Reader’s Digest poll to be one of Canada’s most trusted influencers, he holds 15 honorary doctorates and degrees, and has received the Order of Canada, the Roosevelt Freedom From Fear Medal, and the World Children’s Prize for the Rights of the Child. In 2015, he was named Canada’s Most Admired CEO by Waterstone Human Capital, together with his brother, Marc.

Craig’s work has been featured with multiple appearances on The Oprah Winfrey Show and 60 Minutes, as well as in National Geographic, TIME, and The Economist. He’s also been a panelist on CBC’s Canada Reads.

Recent News


Craig Featured in Lifestyles Magazine

(Lifestyles Magazine, Spring 2013) —Alanna Mager At 12 years old, Craig Kielburger was well aware of the world’s injustices. His storied entrée […]

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Craig Keilburger

“Piers Morgan Live, Rewind” – Craig Kielburger, Martin Sheen and Mia Farrow

(Appeared on March 15, 2013) —Whether you fell asleep early, stayed out too late, or simply want to watch it […]

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Craig Kielburger Featured in New Book on Humanitarian Leadership - The Humanitarian Leader in Each of Us. 7 Choices That Shape a Socially Responsible Life.

Craig Kielburger Featured in New Book on Humanitarian Leadership

Craig Kielburger, co-founder of Free The Children, is profiled in a new book that explores an intriguing question: How do […]

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Kielburger book offers tips on becoming socially conscious

(Appeared in Halifax Chronicle Herald May 12, 2012) — Even social activist Craig Kielburger has had to break a few habits. The 29-year-old […]

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National We Day

Sustaining the future of philanthropy through social enterprise

(Appeared in Guelph Mercury March 14, 2012) — There are approximately 80,000 registered charitable organizations in Canada, and more than 40 per cent […]

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