Antonio Banderas appointed UN Goodwill Ambassador

US appoints Spanish actor Antonio Banderas as Goodwill Ambassador for anti-poverty fight

Staff
AP News

Mar 17, 2010 19:58 EDT

Spanish actor Antonio Banderas has been named a U.N. Goodwill Ambassador for the fight against poverty, the United Nations Development Program announced Wednesday.

UN Antonio Banderas
FILE - In this Oct. 1, 2008 file photo, Spanish actor, Antonio Banderas, reacts during Ibero-American Congress on Culture in Mexico City. Banderas has been named a U.N. Goodwill Ambassador for the fight against poverty, the United Nations Development Program announced Wednesday March 17, 2010. (AP Photo/Alexandre Meneghini, File)
 

In his new role as an advocate for the poor, Antonio Banderas will set his sights on the Millennium Development Goals, a set of eight globally agreed targets that seek to halve world poverty by 2015 by combating hunger, disease, illiteracy, environment degradation and discrimination against women.

"Poverty robs us of our potential as a people, preventing us from being all that we can be," Banderas said in a statement. "This is why it is so important to mobilize all of our efforts to defeat it, especially if today we have the knowledge, the tools and the resources to do it."

Banderas said he will work to spur action at all levels of society with a particular focus on Africa and Latin America.

UNDP Administrator Helen Clark said she looks forward to Banderas raising awareness globally on issues related to combatting poverty. "UNDP is pleased to have Antonio join our group of Goodwill Ambassadors," Clark said. "His proven commitment to the causes of the less fortunate makes him an ideal advocate for our work."

Banderas, who is a passionate soccer fan, said he is thrilled to join sports champions and UNDP Goodwill Amabassadors Didier Drogba, Ronaldo and Zinedine Zidane in their work with the organization. Other UNDP Goodwill Amabassadors include tennis star Maria Sharapova, Japanese actress Misako Kono and Crown Prince Khaakon Magnus of Norway.

Source: AP News