Michel Chikwanine

Michel Chikwanine
Former Child Soldier, Author, Humanitarian
 
From Child Soldier to Child Activist: The Journey to Hope
Born in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Michel grew up amid the terror of the Great War of Africa. He witnessed the torture of his father, who was singled out for his political beliefs, the rape of his mother and endured torture of his own. Much of Michel’s childhood was ravaged by the death and decay of a war that claimed the lives of 5.8 million people. Now a university student, Michel shares his personal story leaving audiences with a new perspective on life, a sense of hope through social responsibility and a desire for change.
Bio: 

A former child soldier, Michel Chikwanine has already endured and overcome unimaginable pain and struggles. His passion and belief in the possibility for change  makes  him a truly remarkable individual and humanitarian. Born in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Michel Chikwanine has experienced  civil  war, political  upheaval  and poverty, emerging as an individual wise beyond his years. Forced by these circumstances to leave his home country at the age of 11 as a refugee, Michel has since traveled to 35 African countries, witnessing firsthand the problems faced by the developing world, but also the beauty of the communities and people who live there. Much of his childhood was ravaged by the death and decay of a war that claimed the lives of 5.8 million people, including his father, and forced him to be a child soldier. Michel now inspires people to believe in their ability to make a difference and leaves audiences with a new perspective on life, a sense of hope through social responsibility and a desire for change. Today, Michel is an accomplished motivational speaker and the co-author of Child Soldier: When
Boys and Girls Are Used in War. Michel addresses audiences across North America. As a WE Day speaker he has shared the stage with such distinguished speakers as WE Charity, WE Day and ME to WE Co-founders Marc & Craig Kielburger, Dr. Jane Goodall, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, and Reverend Jesse L. Jackson Sr. to name a few. He was a speaker on Oprah’s  O’Ambassadors  Roots of Action speaking tour. By sharing his personal story, Michel has captured the attention of national media, including CBC, CTV and major daily newspapers, as he inspires people to believe in their ability to create change.