Pages Menu

Visit SEWF (
for the latest information!
Categories Menu

Posted on Jul 1, 2013

A Matter of Impact: SEWF Main Stage Begins with the End In Mind

A Matter of Impact: SEWF Main Stage Begins with the End In Mind

Dan Overall

Dan Overall

“It is hoped ‘impact’ will be a crucial component of the conversations throughout all of SEWF 2013, but we wanted to put that primacy of purpose front and centre”, said Dan Overall, Executive Director of SEWF 2013. “So we are taking a page out of Stephen Covey’s iconic book and beginning SEWF 2013 with a deliberate focus on the end point of everything we do, ‘impact’.”

While impact at the level of ‘scaling up’ and ‘systemic change’ gets a lot of the focus in the media, SEWF 2013 will seek to highlight, honour and support contributions made at four basic levels of impact: service delivery, scaling up, pattern change, and systemic change.

“The opening plenary will look at impact from three angles – creating it, measuring it, and collaborating to take it to the next level” added Overall. “We are honoured and thrilled to have such distinguished panel leading off our Forum and addressing the crucial issue of impact.”

The topics and speakers are as follows (full bios are below):

  • “Creating Impact”: Craig Kielburger; Co-Founder, Free The Children; Co-Founder, Me to We
  • “Measuring Impact”: Carla Javits, President, REDF
  • “Collaborating to Enhance Impact”: Al Etmanski, co-founder of Planned Lifetime Advocacy Network
  • Facilitator: Facilitator: Gerry Higgins, Chief Executive Officer at CEiS (Community Enterprise in Scotland) and a Director at the Social Value Lab

“Creating Impact”: Craig Kielburger; Co-Founder, Free The Children; Co-Founder, Me to We

Craig Kielburger

Craig Kielburger

Craig Kielburger is a social entrepreneur, New York Times best-selling author, and syndicated columnist.

He co-founded Free The Children in 1995 when he was 12-years-old. Today, more than 1.7 million young people are involved in its programs. In North America, the organization provides comprehensive service-learning programs, including its We Day celebrations attended annually by more than 100,000 students from 3,000 participating schools. Internationally, the organization works in eight developing countries providing a holistic and sustainable development model, including education, health care, food security, clean water, and alternative income programs. Its programs have empowered more than one million beneficiaries.

Alongside his brother Marc, Craig is also the co-founder of Me to We, an innovative social enterprise that seeks to support the work of Free The Children by providing socially conscious products and experiences. Craig is the author of ten books. He holds 15 honorary doctorates and degrees, and has received The Order of Canada, The Roosevelt Freedom Medal, and the World Children’s Prize for the Rights of the Child. His work has been featured with multiple appearances on The Oprah Winfrey Show and 60 Minutes, as well in as National Geographic, TIME, and The Economist.

“Measuring Impact”: Carla Javits, President, REDF

Carla Javits

Carla Javits

Carla Javits is the President of REDF which provides equity-like investments and business assistance to create and grow ‘double bottom line’, non-profit run social enterprises that create jobs as a means to ending cycles of unemployment, homelessness, and incarceration by employing people who face high barriers. The employees gain experience and earn a paycheck, while the nonprofits generate income that makes the businesses sustainable.

Social enterprises supported by REDF have generated more than $135 million in revenue, while employing more than 7,500 people, with three quarters of those interviewed still working two years later.

REDF has invested in a new portfolio to further develop this job creation model in California, while building the evidence-base and laying the groundwork for national replication.  REDF was among the inaugural group of eleven intermediaries awarded a federal Social Innovation Fund grant by the Corporation for National and Community Services.

Prior to joining REDF, Carla directed the California expansion of the Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH) and then became CSH’s national President and CEO, providing grants, loans, and technical assistance in 10 states, and advancing policies to build the field of service-enriched housing that ended homelessness for tens of thousands.  Previously, she was Program Analyst with the California Office of the Legislative Analyst, and Director of Policy and Planning for the San Francisco Department of Social Services. Carla also worked in hospitality and catering, and was part of the original staff of Berkeley’s iconic Bette’s Oceanview Diner.

Carla serves on the Board of Directors of Northern California Grantmakers, the Social Enterprise Alliance, and The Melville Charitable Trust; and as Advisor to the Board of NISH.

“Collaborating to Enhance Impact”: Al Etmanski, co-founder of Planned Lifetime Advocacy Network

Al Etmanski

Al Etmanski

Al is an curator, author, blogger (, advocate and social entrepreneur specializing in innovative, multi-sector solutions to complex societal challenges.

He is currently a partner in the national collaboration, Social Innovation Generation (SIG). ( SiG is dedicated to scaling up innovative solutions to deeply rooted social problems and exploring new methods of financing the social sector.

Al is an Ashoka fellow, ( and a faculty member of John McKnight’s Asset Based Community Development Institute (ABCD).

He is co-founder of Planned Lifetime Advocacy Network (PLAN)( He proposed and led the successful campaign to establish the world’s first savings plan for people with disabilities – the Registered Disability Savings Plan (

Facilitator: Gerry Higgins, Chief Executive Officer at CEiS (Community Enterprise in Scotland) and a Director at the Social Value Lab. 

Gerry Higgins

Gerry Higgins

Gerry brings over 30 years’ experience in developing and running social enterprises and works with government agencies and third sector partners in the UK and internationally to support policy and practice. His current work includes developing public sector markets for social enterprise and building the capacity of social enterprises to build sustainable and effective businesses.

As Chief Executive Officer at CEiS, Gerry leads a team of over 50 people to provide services including business support, employability services, project consultancy, social research, business finance and event management. Gerry joined CEiS in 2006 having previously established Social Firms UK as founder as CEO in 1999. He was a founding director of the Social Enterprise Coalition (UK) and worked with the DTI to draft and introduce the first UK Social Enterprise Strategy in 2002.  Prior to this he worked for over 20 years to develop innovative training and employment services for third sector and public sector bodies in the UK and Ireland.

Gerry was the host of the inaugural Social Enterprise World Forum in 2008, and is currently a member of the World Forum Steering Group: a group that has engaged 1,500 social enterprise leaders and practitioners in annual events in Edinburgh, Melbourne, San Francisco, Johannesburg and Rio.  He is one of 13 co-chairs for SEWF 2013.

About SEWF:

SEWF Web-Banners-1-SmallThe Social Enterprise World Forum is a global gathering to hear inspiring speakers, connect, share ideas, and advance a movement dedicated to a powerful idea – that working together we can use markets and innovations to solve the world’s most complex and confounding social, economic, and environmental challenges.

Each year SEWF gives a different host country an incredible opportunity to celebrate and nurture its own social enterprise movement. 2013 is Canada’s chance to shine. Event host, TRICO Charitable Foundation, is partnering with the Social Enterprise Council of Canada, the MaRS Centre for Impact Investing, Social Innovation Generation, and the Canadian Community Economic Development Network to make this a watershed moment for social enterprise, for Canada and for the world.

SEWF 2013 by the numbers:

  • Attendees: 1,200 from 30 countries
  • 6 Program Tracks: Social Finance/Impact Investing, Indigenous Social Enterprise, Social Enterprise Skills Building, Research and Public Policy, Cross-Boundary Collaboration, Social Innovation
  • Breakout Sessions: 36, featuring 120 speakers from 20 countries
  • Main Stage Speakers: 17
  • 1st time in Canada
  • October 2-4, 2013, Calgary, Canada

Click here to register.