Kath Koschel

Founder, Kindness Factory; Resilience Expert

  • Shares her incredible journey of twice overcoming irrecoverable medical prognoses and unimaginable tragedy to demonstrate how anyone can turn adversity into triumph
  • Uncovers unique strategies for people to reframe their mindsets to be rooted in kindness, gratitude, and resilience on the path to success
  • Founder of Kindness Factory, a global movement that has inspired more than four million acts of kindness worldwide

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A testament to the power of the human spirit, Kath Koschel is a survivor who has overcome incredible odds and unimaginable tragedy to inspire ordinary people to do extraordinary things. Koschel is formerly an elite cricketer and Ironman competitor whose world came crashing down when she broke her back twice in the span of five years and was told she’d never walk again. Instead, she faced the challenges head-on and defied all medical prognoses by teaching herself to walk again on three separate occasions. Driven by a passion to spread gratitude in the world, she founded Kindness Factory with the goal of encouraging one million acts of kindness and helping people find the light during dark times — just as she has done so many times.    

Exclusively represented by Leading Authorities speakers bureau, Koschel takes the audience on an emotional rollercoaster — sharing valuable lessons learned from the highs of achieving her dreams of becoming a professional cricketer and overcoming the odds to complete an Ironman challenge with feeling in only one of her legs, to the extreme lows of breaking her back a second time and losing the love of her life. Through her powerful story, she demonstrates how, with courage, determination, and mental resilience, anyone is capable of turning adversity into triumph — whether in their workplace and community, or within themselves. As she encourages audiences to reframe their mindsets and instills the belief that they are greater than any setback in front of them, she shares simple steps they can follow to uplift others through kindness and continue spreading hope in the world. Her story has inspired acts of kindness from countless businesspeople, athletes, and schoolchildren.

Koschel originally launched Kindness Factory in November 2015 as a way to cope with the sudden loss of her partner, who committed suicide. Out to prove that it is possible to survive physically, mentally, and emotionally on the kindness of others, she traveled across Australia with nothing but the clothes on her back and documented the outpouring of support of offers of food and shelter extended to her on her journey. Kindness Factory has since evolved into a global movement of people helping each other achieve the impossible. To date, the organization has logged more than four million acts of kindness and raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for various charity organizations. Before Kindness Factory, Koschel was living her dream playing cricket in the UK before being picked by the new South Wales Breakers and making the move back home to further her career. In her first game, she scored 57 runs and was named player of the match. Three games later, she broke her back for the first time, changing the course of her life, and her purpose, forever.

As Koschel continues to empower others through kindness, her remarkable story has been featured in leading media outlets, including The Morning Show on Australia’s 7News, Daily Mail, The Canberra Times, and Daily Telegraph. She is a recipient of the 2016 Pride of Australia Medal for showing courage in the face of extreme adversity, has been recognized with the Young Australian Medal and the People’s Choice of Australia award, in addition to being named a ”Woman of Worth” by Marie Claire. A national ambassador for R U OK? Day who was selected to deliver the Australian Prime Minister’s address at the Young Leader’s Forum, Koschel is a force for driving change in the world through action.

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Speaker Video

Kath Koschel: One Small Act of Kindness Is Just the Beginning

Kath Koschel's Inspiring Story of Overcoming Incredible Odds

Kindness is the key to connection | TEDxYouth@Abbotsleigh

One Small Act | WORLDZ

How acts of kindness empowered Kath Koschel to overcome adversity | 7NEWS

Give Up or Get Going: Turning Adversity into Triumph. At 23, Kath Koschel was on top of the world. She had achieved her dream of becoming a professional cricketer and, in her first game for New South Wales Breakers, scored 57 runs and was selected as the player of the match. Three games later, she broke her back and was told she’d never walk again. But she defied the prognosis and relearned to walk. Things were looking up. She had met the love of her life during her recovery but was soon faced with unimaginable heartbreak when he committed suicide. And just as she was starting to put her life back together, Koschel broke her back again and was for a second time told she’d never walk again — all within the span of five years.

Yet, somehow, Koschel has displayed elite levels of determination and resilience to overcome every obstacle in her path. She takes audiences on an emotional rollercoaster as she reflects on her own life story to share valuable lessons learned from life’s high points, as well as its extreme lows. Unafraid to be vulnerable with her audience, Koschel provides actionable strategies for facing fear, doubt, and sorrow head-on, and empowers audience members to reframe their mindsets to affect positive change in their own lives and the lives of others through perseverance, grit, and kindness while turning adversity into triumph.  

Kindness is the Catalyst for Building High-Performance Teams. As resilience expert and former standout cricketer Kath Koschel shares, a key component of her long and physically demanding recovery from two broken backs was the kindness of strangers. It’s what inspired her to found a nonprofit organization, Kindness Factory. To date, Kindness Factory has logged more than four million acts of kindness worldwide — from volunteering at a shelter to donating a kidney. 

In this talk, Koschel channels the same energy that led to Kindness Factory becoming an unstoppable movement of people helping one another to illustrate the undeniable roles that kindness and gratitude play in connecting people in the workplace and orienting teams toward purpose and success. Sharing a one-of-a-kind framework for elevating collective creativity, innovation, and productivity beginning with kindness, she emphasizes how human connection is the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued — and when they can give and receive without judgment. Once this connection is achieved, teams can begin to realize their full potential and beyond.

Lead by Example, Not by Opinion: Becoming the Best Version of Yourself. Resilience expert Kath Koschel is a testament to what is possible with a positive mindset and dedication to serving others. From breaking her back twice to losing her partner — all within the span of five years — instead of being mad at the world, she chose to spread kindness throughout it and become the best version of herself. As founder of Kindness Factory, she has inspired more than four million acts of kindness across the globe and has powered an uplifting movement for people who want to be and do better.

In this talk, Koschel opens the audience’s eyes to all we can accomplish when we focus on the abilities that we are fortunate to have and that support our journeys to success in the workplace and in our personal lives. She outlines proven methods for setting and achieving ambitious goals and demonstrates the role kindness plays in becoming our best selves to elevate wellbeing and drive change in all aspects of life.  


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