On February 28th, Craig Kielburger, Founder of WE Charity, came to 1871 to discuss his charity and how he got his entrepreneurial start at an early age. “WE Charity is an international charity and educational partner.”
Mr. Kielburger is 34 years old and from Canada. His original motive to help people from poverty and exploitation began when he was only twelve years old. He read in the newspaper about a 12-year old former child slave in Pakistan, who had been murdered because he spoke up about human rights. This is where it all sparked for Mr. Kielburger. Twenty years later, WE Charity makes constant strides to improve daily lives of children and families.
People all around the world are involved in the charity. There are several powerful members of the WE team, including the Board of Directors, celebrity ambassadors, volunteers, etc. ME to WE (the social enterprise aspect of the charity) has several retail partners like Pacsun, Walgreens, Nordstrom, Staples, and many more. Since 2009, ME to WE has donated more than $8.5 million to WE Charity. There are constant strides and success measures. Since 2010, attendance stats at Manac Primary School in Haiti have increased over 40%.
The main difference between WE Charity and other organizations is the idea of “Tracking Your Impact”. Mr. Kielburger stated how this form of donation proves to be more profitable. He used the example of going door-to-door to collect money for a charity or giving a dollar at the cash register when making a purchase. There is a connection lost through these interactions. People don’t fully know where their money is going. That is not the case with WE. Every ME to WE item sold has a tracking number that lets the consumer see directly where their donation is going, digitally. This is the personal component to WE. This is the new wave of giving.
Mr. Kielburger emphasized the importance of social change and incorporating this into everyday life. Whether through social enterprise, embarking on a ME to WE trip, or learning in school, we see how our lives are related to social change. His central theme revolves around being present and understanding the difference each person is making when they decide to join this movement. From Mr. Kielburger’s presentation, I could understand the level of commitment and personal thought he has contributed.
The insights that were shared enlightened a new approach to entrepreneurship, and more specifically how this charity stands out. The techniques and technology broaden their audiences and shed light on their actions. WE Charity is living proof of a well thought out charity/social enterprise that changes the world.