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Model Vu Nguyen Ha Anh appointed UNICEF Viet Nam National Goodwill Ambassador

© UNICEF/Viet Nam/2010/Nguyen Thi Thanh Huong
UNICEF Viet Nam Acting Representative Jean Dupraz handing the official letter of appointment as Goodwill Ambassador over to M. Vu Nguyen Ha Anh

Ha Noi, 18 August 2010 – Internationally renowned model Vu Nguyen Ha Anh, is joining the ranks of over 270 national Goodwill Ambassadors that are supporting UNICEF around the world to increase public awareness of the rights of children and women. UNICEF Goodwill Ambassadors are well-known personalities willing to do their utmost to mobilise support for children among the general public and within their industry. These volunteers have a unique ability to touch people’s hearts with their passion and commitment.

Life-long Dream
“Supporting UNICEF's work for children in Viet Nam is a life-long dream. Child rights is an issue that I've been engaged with on many different levels for a number of years. But it is a privilege and an immense pleasure to team up with UNICEF, an organisation that has a unique mission, tremendous capacity and has already achieved so much in Viet Nam", said Ms. Ha Anh as at a press briefing in Ha Noi during which she was officially appointed UNICEF Viet Nam’s Goodwill Ambassador. 

Ms. Ha Anh, now in her late twenties, studied in the United-Kingdom (UK), where she began a career as a photo model and quickly became popular. She worked intensively within the fashion industry around the world and eventually became known as a "super model". While living in the UK, Ms. Vu engaged in various charity work, and here in Viet Nam she has been involved with an organisation providing support to children with disabilities. Ms. Vu is now based in Viet Nam while still engaged in her work around the world.

Ms. Vu Nguyen Ha Anh’s appointment as UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador is an acknowledgment of her commitment to children’s issues.

Role Model
“While she already enjoys high visibility and an enthusiastic following in Viet Nam, especially among younger people, we appreciate the fact that Ms. Ha Anh is well connected to the cultural and artistic scene in Viet Nam and that she can mobilise many of her peers and fellow celebrities for the cause of Viet Nam's children.”, said M. Jean Dupraz, UNICEF Viet Nam acting Representative. “She has struck us as not only an excellent role model for young people, but also as the perfect bridge between the younger and the older generations in Viet Nam. Given her strong commitment to children affected by HIV/AIDS, and to social and cultural change in relation to breastfeeding practice and sex selection at birth as well as road safety in Viet Nam, she will be a compelling and eloquent advocate for these and related issues.”

© UNICEF/Viet Nam/2010/Nguyen Thi Thanh Huong
Ms. Vu Nguyen Ha Anh’s appointment as UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador is an acknowledgment of her commitment to children’s issues.

Ms. Vu Nguyen Ha Anh will initially focus her public engagement and support to UNICEF on five specific issues: combating stigma and discrimination towards children affected by HIV/AIDS; raising awareness among young people about HIV and AIDS prevention; advocating for road safety and the importance of helmet wearing by children; and encouraging social and cultural change in relation to breastfeeding and sex selection at birth.

The duration of Ms. Vu Nguyen Ha Anh’s appointment as UNICEF Viet Nam Goodwill Ambassador is for two years, from August 2010 to July 2012.
Ensuring all children benefit equally from the new prosperity
Viet Nam was the first country in Asia – and just the second in the world – to ratify the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Propelled by an impressive economic growth backed by investment in social programmes, Viet Nam has now reached middle-income status. The country is on track to achieve nearly all of the Millennium Development Goals at the national level by the deadline year of 2015. It is however unlikely that the country willmeet the HIV/AIDS and sanitation related targets.  Moreover, not all of Viet Nam’s nearly 30 million children - about 35 per cent of the population - are benefitting equally from the country’s new prosperity. Gaps between the rich and the poor and between ethnic Kinh Vietnamese and the country’s many minority populations (13 percent of the population) are increasing. Even as the general poverty rate fell from 58 per cent in 1993 to 14 per cent in 2008, rural and ethnic minority populations are emerging from poverty at a much slower pace. In 2008, nearly 50 per cent of the country’s ethnic minorities were living in poverty, compared to less than 10 per cent of majority Kinh and Hoa people.
UNICEF’s programmes aim to ensure that no child is left behind as Viet Nam continues to develop.



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