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Kids Take Action

In 1995, Craig Kielburger picked up a newspaper and read a story that changed his life. Kielburger read about a boy in Pakistan, a country in Asia. When the boy was 4 years old, he had been sold into slavery.

Starting Free the Children

The boy's story upset Kielburger, who was 12 at the time. He told a group of friends about the boy he had read about. Together, Kielburger and his friends started a group called Free the Children.

Today, Kielburger and Free the Children help kids help other kids around the world. More than 100,000 children from 35 countries are working on Free the Children projects. They are helping free kids who are being treated badly or are being forced to work.

Become a Powerful Force

Free the Children also wants kids to know that they can change the world. To help kids become world leaders, Kielburger, who is now 19, and his brother published a book called Take Action! A Guide to Active Citizenship.

In the book, Kielburger tells kids, “‘Young people are the leaders of tomorrow,’ or so the saying goes. But you do not have to wait until tomorrow to change the world. You can be a leader today.”

The book also tells readers about some of the things Free the Children has done. Free the Children has built more than 300 schools, which 15,000 kids attend. The group collected $2.5 million to buy health supplies for needy families and has also raised money for teacher salaries and school supplies.

Kielburger and the kids in Free the Children are showing the world that kids can make a difference. Many world leaders have praised Kielburger's work. “Craig's unerring [perfect] sense of justice and . . . determination have produced one of the great human rights leaders of our time,” said one United Nations official.