|Dixie Dansercoer, explorer|
Dixie Dansercoer is one of UNICEF Belgium’s eight goodwill ambassadors. Together with Alain Hubert he crossed the Arctic Circle and planted a UNICEF flag on his way to the North Pole. Dixie,40, is married to Julie Brown and proud father of four children.
“All children have the right to a good start in life: good health, a good education and the possibility to grow up in a safe and healthy environment. For most children in the industrialised world this is considered as normal. We are not always aware of just how lucky we are.
“It is unacceptable that in the electronic age there are still people, especially children, who do not have access to clean water, basic healthcare, a healthy environment. Every day thousands of children die because they have no access to basic healthcare, millions of children are exploited, thousands of children have to fight the wars of grown-ups, many children – and especially girls - still have no access to good-quality education.
“During my many travels and expeditions I met children from different cultures and religions. Many times I was confronted with extreme poverty, which made me feel very sad, but which also inspired me to act.
“Improving the well-being of children is everyone’s business: not only UNICEF’s but also ordinary people’s, young and old. Everyone can contribute to building a better world - a world in which children’s rights are respected; where children can grow up in a healthy and safe environment; and where they have the possibility to develop to their full potential.
“Investing in children is investing in the future. It is very important to make sure that every child has everything he or she needs to grow up to become responsible citizens who can play their part in the development of their society. Working towards this goal is our common responsibility.
“That is also why I decided to give some of my time to UNICEF and its cause for children’s rights. I like to use my celebrity status to sensitise the public to the work of UNICEF and to the problems children, unfortunately, are still confronting in today’s world. UNICEF works with children and communities to change this by making use of simple, innovative, low-cost and effective solutions. I believe it is my duty to get the UNICEF message across to the general public.
“The images of smiling children and the energy of UNICEF’s many volunteers are what power the engines of our daily fight against child poverty and child rights violations.
“Let’s join forces and, guided by the UN-Convention on the Rights of the Child, work together to build a world truly fit for children!”