Cheryl Perera

Youth, Girls and Women’s Empowerment Advocate. Trail Blazer. Leader. Acclaimed Public Speaker.

Distinguished as a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader and Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100, Cheryl is the Founder and President of OneChild, the first organization in the world empowering children and youth to combat the sexual exploitation of children through prevention education, advocacy, survivor care, and survivor empowerment, benefiting over 74, 000 in 15 countries. OneChild has been named as one of the Top 5 Canadian Charities run by Young Professionals.

After learning about the sexual exploitation of children and child sex trafficking while researching in her Grade 10 Civics class; Cheryl was filled with anger and resolve to stop this phenomenon in its tracks.

At 17, she played the main role of the decoy in a STING operation to apprehend a child sex perpetrator; and earned herself an offer of a placement as the Sri Lankan President’s Nominee on Child Protection. Today, her career spans 22 countries, where she has investigated the sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism; lobbied across private, public, and civil society organizations to increase awareness of legislation combating the sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism; and provided shelter and long-term comprehensive care to hundreds of victims in Asia.  She has spoken to tens of thousands and shared the stage with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Malala Yousafzai and Heads of State.

Distinguished as a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader and Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100, Cheryl is the Founder and President of OneChild, the first organization in the world empowering children and youth to combat the sexual exploitation of children through prevention education, advocacy, survivor care, and survivor empowerment, benefiting over 74, 000 in 15 countries. OneChild has been named as one of the Top 5 Canadian Charities run by Young Professionals.

After learning about the sexual exploitation of children and child sex trafficking while researching in her Grade 10 Civics class; Cheryl was filled with anger and resolve to stop this phenomenon in its tracks.

At 17, she played the main role of the decoy in a STING operation to apprehend a child sex perpetrator; and earned herself an offer of a placement as the Sri Lankan President’s Nominee on Child Protection. Today, her career spans 22 countries, where she has investigated the sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism; lobbied across private, public, and civil society organizations to increase awareness of legislation combating the sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism; and provided shelter and long-term comprehensive care to hundreds of victims in Asia.  She has spoken to tens of thousands and shared the stage with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Malala Yousafzai and Heads of State.

Cheryl is a former youth advocate for both the United Nations Secretary-General’s Global Education First Initiative and the Global Partnership for Education. Previously, she worked for  World Vision Canada, CARE USA, and WE, engaging the public in advocacy for supply chain legislation to combat child labour; supporting U.S. government advocacy on child marriage, and training/mentoring thousands on child rights advocacy.

Cheryl holds a Masters of Advanced Studies in Children’s Rights from the University of Geneva and a B.A.(Hons) in Ethics, Society, and Law; Political Science; and Women’s Studies from the University of Toronto.  She is also a graduate of Harvard University and the University of Oxford’s Executive Education programs on Transformational Leadership and Public Policy in the 21st Century.

She has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Globe & Mail, Al-Jazeera, CNN, and the Financial Times of London etc. She received the 2017 L’Oreal Canada Women of Worth Award; 2006 World of Children Founder’s Award; and 2005 Canada’s Top 20 Under 20, among others.

*Please note that there is a more significant fee associated with booking Cheryl.  We ask that clients also cover travel/accommodation costs.

Cheryl is a former youth advocate for both the United Nations Secretary-General’s Global Education First Initiative and the Global Partnership for Education. Previously, she worked for  World Vision Canada, CARE USA, and WE, engaging the public in advocacy for supply chain legislation to combat child labour; supporting U.S. government advocacy on child marriage, and training/mentoring thousands on child rights advocacy.

Cheryl holds a Masters of Advanced Studies in Children’s Rights from the University of Geneva and a B.A.(Hons) in Ethics, Society, and Law; Political Science; and Women’s Studies from the University of Toronto.  She is also a graduate of Harvard University and the University of Oxford’s Executive Education programs on Transformational Leadership and Public Policy in the 21st Century.

She has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Globe & Mail, Al-Jazeera, CNN, and the Financial Times of London etc. She received the 2017 L’Oreal Canada Women of Worth Award; 2006 World of Children Founder’s Award; and 2005 Canada’s Top 20 Under 20, among others.

*Please note that there is a more significant fee associated with booking Cheryl.  We ask that clients also cover travel/accommodation costs.

Contact Us

8865 Woodbine Avenue
Unit D3, Suite 124,
Markham, ON
L3R 5G1
Canada

General Inquiries: info@onechild.ca
Youth Inquiries: youth@onechild.ca

1.905.886.2222

General Inquiries: info@onechild.ca
Youth Inquiries: youth@onechild.ca

1.905.886.2222