Free the Children - You Can Change the World
August 23, 2003
Please note that you will need a copy of RealPlayer installed on your computer in order to view the following video file(s).
Eight years ago a 12 year old boy came up with the idea of Children helping other children in the third world, and with the help of unions and charities, that dream grew into Free The Children.
At the 7th Constitutional CAW Convention in Toronto Craig Keilberger was awarded the union's Nelson Mandela Human Rights Award from CAW president Buzz Hargrove.
CAW National President
"I'm proud to call him my friend. I'm proud to call him one of my heroes and I am extremely proud, on your behalf, to present him with the most prestigious award that this union presents to anyone, and we only do it every three years, to Craig Keilberger."
Free The Children, which is run by children in North America, has raised money and built 350 schools in underdeveloped countries and has helped over 125,000 children. Keilberger told the delegates that with their help progress is being made.
Free The Children
"And now today, thanks to charitable organizations, thanks to unions, thanks to a partnership that developed, and I am proud to say thanks to the work of thousands of children themselves, the issue of exploitative child labour is now in school curriculums, it's now on government agendas, it's now being discussed by corporate CEO's, it's now being carried in the media."
"Our youth members here in North America are leading an advocacy campaign. They are organizing sweat free schools."
"Elementary and high schools are some of the largest purchasers of sports equipment and uniforms across North America. And as school board after school board, after school board, passes legislation, passes a new law to govern themselves, whereby they can not purchase sweat made products I can guarantee you that companies are starting to realize that it's in their moral interest but also in their financial interest to start respecting human rights, and start respecting workers' rights."
Keilberger thanked the CAW for the award, their on-going assistance and left them with a final thought.
Free The Children
"There is a village that says "when spider webs unite they can tie up a lion." We may be young, maybe sometimes as adults we may feel powerless, but when we come together. When we work together, and when we join in a spirit of solidarity we can tie up the lion of poverty, of war, of apathy, of injustice and we can change the world."
CAW "Fighting Back Makes a Difference."