|© The JC Group/Katharine Schroeder|
Jackie Chan, world-famous actor, martial arts expert and comic charmer, is also known for using his celebrity status as a vehicle for humanitarian and public service work. During a visit to Cambodia in April 2004, Mr. Chan was appointed as Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF.
As Goodwill Ambassador, Mr. Chan is an inspiration to young people and a compelling advocate for children. On his UNICEF missions, he provides empathy and hope to children, such as those who face an uncertain future because of economic hardship, experience HIV- or AIDS-related discrimination or struggle to live with landmine injuries. In a recent UNICEF mission, to Timor-Leste, he met with students, out-of-school youth and young street rivals to talk of the peaceful and unifying force of martial arts.
Mr. Chan has also made numerous public service announcements to raise awareness on issues that can have devastating consequences for children, such as AIDS and avian influenza.
Mr. Chan’s other philanthropic endeavours include the Jackie Chan Charitable Foundation in Hong Kong, founded in 1988, which offers scholarships and support to young people, and provides medical services and aid to victims of natural disasters. In 2005, he founded the Dragon’s Heart Foundation to assist children and elderly people in remote areas of China.
Born in Hong Kong in 1954, Mr. Chan was trained in all aspects of traditional Chinese opera, including acting, singing and the martial arts. He began his career there as a stuntman and has since moved on to starring roles. His combination of humour and martial arts expertise endears him to audiences around the world. His movie hits include Rumble in the Bronx, Rush Hour, Shanghai Knights, Rob-B-Hood and Rush Hour 3.
His awards include the Hong Kong Artists’ Guild Best Actor award (1989), the Insignes de Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres from the Cinematheque Francaise (1990), the Outstanding Contribution to Movies Award by the Asia Pacific Film Festival (1993) and a Life Time Achievement Award from MTV Movie Award (1995).
Jackie Chan has also earned many prestigious awards and accolades for his charity and humanitarian work. He was made a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire in 1989 and conferred the Honorary Doctorate of Social Science by the Hong Kong Baptist University in 1996. In 2001, he was designated an honorary member of the Los Angeles Police Department and the US cities of San Francisco, Chicago and Las Vegas have named special days after him.
Jackie Chan lives in Hong Kong