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UNICEF celebrates Nana Mouskouri’s 20 years as a Goodwill Ambassador

© UNICEF/NYHQ1998-0375/Geenen
25 October marks 20 years of internationally acclaimed singer and humanitarian Nana Mouskouri’s work as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. Ms. Mouskouri at a nursery school, during a 1998 visit to Kenya.

By Debbie Toskovic Kavanagh

On 25 October, the UNICEF family honours 20 years of internationally acclaimed singer and humanitarian Nana Mouskouri’s dedication to her role as UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador.

NEW YORK, United States of America, 24 October 2013 – 25 October marks 20 years of Nana Mouskouri’s dedication to the role of UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. The internationally acclaimed singer and humanitarian has called working with UNICEF “the most rewarding thing that I have ever done in my life”. 

Since her appointment in 1993, and spanning the leadership of UNICEF Executive Directors James P. Grant, Carol Bellamy, Ann M. Veneman and Anthony Lake, Ms. Mouskouri has visited UNICEF-supported programme work across the globe, using her voice to amplify the voices of vulnerable children everywhere. 

Ms. Mouskouri has visited numerous countries for UNICEF, from her first trips in 1994 and 1995 to Mexico and Chile to Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Guatemala, the Russian Federation and Viet Nam. In 2011, she visited Bucharest, Romania, to meet with mothers and newborns to promote the importance of breastfeeding for child health and to follow up on her 2008 visit, during which she had appeared on television to help raise money for baby-friendly hospitals.

© UNICEF/NYHQ1996-0889/Linh
Ms. Mouskouri in Viet Nam, which is among the numerous countries she has visited during her tenure as a Goodwill Ambassador. She has called her work with UNICEF “the most rewarding thing that I have ever done in my life”.

Other highlights of Ms. Mouskouri’s devotion to UNICEF include meeting with government officials in Kenya in 1998 to advocate for child rights and to visit a centre for children affected by HIV/AIDS, and participating, with other musical stars and Goodwill Ambassadors, in the creation of the UNICEF anthem ‘Lullaby’ to observe 20 years of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, in 2009.  

Ms. Mouskouri, who was Member of the European Parliament for two years and is fluent in English, French, German, Greek, Italian and Spanish, has also given her time to support fundraising and advocacy work across UNICEF. In November 2012, she spoke movingly at a gala event for UNICEF Germany that raised funds for Schools for Africa.

Ms. Mouskouri is highly respected for her humanitarian work. In 1997, fellow Goodwill Ambassador Harry Belafonte presented her with the US Fund for UNICEF’s World of Children Award. She has also received a Lifetime Achievement Award, in Athens, and, in 2003, the UNICEF Goodwill Laureate Award. 

UNICEF is profoundly grateful for Nana Mouskouri’s generous support during 20 years as a tireless champion of children’s rights.



UNICEF Photography: UNICEF supporters

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