|© UNICEF China/2010/Liu|
|Newly appointed UNICEF Ambassador in China Maggie Cheung visits a woman living with HIV in Ruili City, in China's Yunnan Province. The woman is a recipient of UNICEF income-generation training and peer support.|
BEIJING, China, 10 May 2010 – Acclaimed international film star Maggie Cheung has been appointed a UNICEF Ambassador in China.
With this appointment, Ms. Cheung will dedicate her fame to the cause of bettering the lives of vulnerable and disadvantaged children in China. She joins a prestigious group of nearly 200 UNICEF Ambassadors – representing fields such as entertainment, sports and the arts – who work to raise public awareness of the priorities of children worldwide.
Appointed on 29 April, Ms. Cheung subsequently travelled with UNICEF Representative in China Dr. Yin Yin Nwe to Yunnan Province to visit communities and children hard-hit by HIV and AIDS. The new UNICEF Ambassador had a firsthand look at how children are affected by the epidemic and how efforts to scale up HIV prevention and care are helping these communities.
|© UNICEF/NYHQ2010-0783/Liu Jerry|
|UNICEF Ambassador Maggie Cheung gives a teddy bear and a notebook to a girl who is HIV-positive in China's Yunnan Province.|
"I have long respected the work of UNICEF in different parts of the world," said Ms. Cheung. "I am greatly honoured by this new role as a spokesperson and advocate for the most vulnerable children in China, and looking forward to helping to improve public awareness on critical issues facing children."
The first UNICEF Ambassador was US actor and comedian Danny Kaye, who was appointed 'Ambassador-at-Large' in the 1950s. Another of the most famous Goodwill Ambassadors was Audrey Hepburn. Today, UNICEF Ambassadors and advocates include US actress Mia Farrow, Belgian astronaut Frank De Winne, Canadian composer Steve Barakatt and Her Majesty Queen Rania Al-Abdullah of Jordan.
Spotlighting children’s issues
"We are delighted to welcome Maggie Cheung as UNICEF Ambassador in China," said Dr. Nwe. "As one of the world's best known Chinese cinema artists, she will help us to continue raising the profile of children's issues. We are thoroughly delighted that such a respected and acclaimed artist will lend her voice to the cause of children."
|© UNICEF China/2010/Liu|
|UNICEF Representative in China Dr. Yin Yin Nwe (left) hands a certificate of appointment to new UNICEF Ambassador Maggie Cheung.|
UNICEF China aims to enlist Maggie Cheung's support for public advocacy on key child rights issues, such as support for children affected by HIV and AIDS, migrants and children with disabilities.
UNICEF will begin a new five year programme of cooperation with the Government of China in 2011, focusing on the most vulnerable children and women in the country.