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UNICEF Goodwill Ambassadors

UNICEF Goodwill Ambassadors play a key role in UNICEF’s aim to protect and promote the rights of children.

Nana Mouskouri’s power to communicate is second to none: with over 200 million albums sold she is not only the best-selling female singer in the history of music, but her ability to speak in six languages makes her the ideal spokesperson.  Since becoming a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador in 1993, Nana Mouskouri has travelled to dozens of countries promoting the rights of children, and many projects that she has supported through personal appearances have been partly financed by her as well.  In essence when Nana Mouskouri speaks - or sings - people listen, which is why her presence at UNICEF Romania’s Gala Telethon 2008, organised to raise money to more firmly establish UNICEF’s Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative and to raise awareness of breastfeeding, was crucial to its success.

It is not often that a household name touches down in Romania, and it was wonderful to hear so convincing a person as Nana Mouskouri speak to Romania’s media about the importance of a child’s diet in the first six months, and how breastfeeding provides all the natural vitamins, mineral and enzymes necessary at that critical time in the life of a child.  As a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador her presence enhanced our own efforts to promote awareness, through a media campaign, and it was fortuitous that our own National Goodwill Ambassador, Andreea Marin Bănică was able to interview her live on television during the telethon.  The telethon was watched by a huge audience from Romania; little surprise then that the awareness of the importance of breastfeeding has never been higher.

During Nana Mouskouri’s stay in Romania she took time out from her busy schedule to visit a Bucharest maternity facility that, having been conferred baby friendly status, is now a local frontrunner of breastfeeding best practice.   Accompanied by Romania’s Minister for Public Health Eugen Nicolăescu and UNICEF Romania’s Representative, Edmond McLoughney, she was shown over the maternity facility at Pantelimon by Monica Boer, the hospital manager and Professor Dr Virgil Ancăr.

UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Nana Mouskouri during an interview in Bucharest.


In Romania Andreea Marin Bănică shares the same kind of name recognition as Nana Mouskouri does globally.  After beginning her career as a newsreader she is now one of Romania’s most popular and recognisable media personality.  Her show, the top-rating Surprize Surprize  often highlighted the plight of Romania’s elderly, ill or poor people, and emphasised beyond doubt Andreea’s credentials as a true humanitarian.

In December 2006 Andreea Marin Bănică accepted the appointment of UNICEF’s National Goodwill Ambassador for Romania and since then has consistently been involved in promoting the rights of children, making personal appearances and presenting fundraising campaigns, such as UNICEF’s Gala Telethon.  One of the highlights of her appointment to date was accepting an invitation to visit UNICEF’s head office in New York, where she joined a panel presentation and round-table discussion on the topic, ‘Playing and developing: assisting children with disabilities,’ organised by Romania’s permanent delegation to the UN, and attended by UNICEF representatives, delegates from the Department of Public information and members from other UN human rights organisations.  She also met with UNICEF’s Executive Director, Ann Veneman, and other senior UNICEF personnel with whom she was able to better understand the problems of the world’s most vulnerable children and hear the in-depth aims of UNICEF’s role in protecting and defending their rights.

UNICEF’s National Goodwill Ambassador for Romania Andreea Marin Bănică and UNICEF’s Executive Director Ann Veneman.




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