Book review: ‘The World Needs Your Kid, How to raise children who care and contribute’

May 11, 2010 Updated: October 1, 2015

(Courtesy of Craig and Marc Kielburger)
(Courtesy of Craig and Marc Kielburger)
OTTAWA—Every family library should have a copy of this book.

Craig Kielburger and his brother Marc, along with Ottawa Citizen writer Shelley Page, have put together their best wisdom and practical advice on how to “nurture global citizens” by engaging and supporting children to effect positive changes in the community or across the globe.

With children being used to hawk everything from cars to cereal in TV ads, it is refreshing to read about real children making real contributions that help other children around the world—and doing it from their hearts.

At the tender age of 11 Craig Kielburger learned that he could influence others and make a difference when he prevented the closure of a local library that he and his friends frequently used. By the time he was 12, Craig became a global activist when he worked with students from his grade seven class to raise money to help end child slavery after reading an article in a newspaper about the death of a former child slave in India.

Eventually, he was helping children around the world when he and Marc founded Free the Children, a charity that “empowers children in North America to take action to improve the lives of fellow children overseas,” as stated on their website www.freethechildren.com.

The brothers teamed with Ottawa writer Shelley Page to write “The World Needs Your Kid.” While attending a roundtable discussion with the Dalai Lama several years ago, Craig and Marc learned that the greatest problem facing the world was that parents are raising “a generation of passive bystanders.” They both felt that this could be changed.

From that meeting the seeds were planted, and as usual, Craig and Marc set out to find a way to help children and families learn how to become engaged in changing the world for the better. The brothers looked for children who had taken the initiative to help others, and profiled them in the book and thereby promoted the idea that our world needs children who care about others and the planet, and who are selflessly working towards a common good.