Shakira, Jude Law, Goldie Hawn and Lang Lang join education emergency coalition
Campaigning celebrities Shakira, Jude Law, Goldie Hawn and Lang Lang have joined the fight to get all of the world’s children into school.
The Colombian pop star, the British movie actor, the American screen legend and the Chinese pianist have become members of the Emergency Coalition for Global Education Action. They are joined by world-renowned figures such as Archbishop Desmond Tutu.
The celebrities will appeal to their millions of fans across the globe to make their voices heard on behalf of the 57 million out-of-school children before the end of 2015 through a 500-Day Global Education Countdown Campaign.
The coalition was launched at the 2015 Countdown Summit with United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
Shakira is a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and has campaigned for children’s rights for many years. In 2010, she was awarded a United Nations agency medal for being “a true ambassador for children and young people, for quality education and social justice”.
The singer-songwriter, best known for hits such as Whenever, Wherever and Hips Don’t Lie, founded the Colombian charity Fundacion Pies Descalzos (Barefoot Foundation) in 1997 which helps poor children get a quality education.
Shakira said: “The Emergency Coalition for Global Education is challenging society to see how many kids we can get into school by the end of 2015.
“We have 500 days to make a real difference. Help us spread the word to get children out of the street and into the classroom.”
Actor Jude Law has won an army of fans with his starring roles in movies including Sherlock Holmes, Cold Mountain and The Talented Mr Ripley.
He supports several charities and causes. As an ambassador for Peace One Day, he filmed in Afghanistan and interviewed children, community leaders and government officials.
Oscar-winning actress Goldie Hawn became a household name in the United States through the 1960s TV comedy Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In. She went on to make a string of successful movies including There’s A Girl In My Soup, Private Benjamin and The First Wives Club.
Goldie is also a producer, director, author and children’s advocate.
She founded The Hawn Foundation, which developed a training programme for teachers and children aimed at providing social end emotional learning skills.
Lang Lang is a UN Messenger of Peace. In 2008, he launched the Lang Lang International Music Foundation in New York to enrich the lives of children through a deeper understanding and enjoyment of classical music and to inspire and financially support the next generation of musicians.
He said: “The key to peace and development in the world can only be achieved through education. Let us, therefore, unite all our efforts to support the dedicated and important work of the Emergency Coalition for Global Education.”
Other members of the Emergency Coalition include:
• Raj Shah, Administrator, US Agency for International Development
• Alice Albright, CEO, Global Partnership for Education
• Strive Masiyiwa, CEO, Econet Wireless
• Kailash Satyarthi, Chairperson, Global March Against Child Labour
• Aliko Dangote, Chair, Dangote Group and Founding Member, Global Business Coalition for Education
• Jim Wallis, Founder, Sojourner
• Archbishop Desmond Tutu
• Ricken Patel, Executive Director, Avaaz
• Fred van Leeuwen, General-Secretary, Education International
• Isha Isatu Sesay, Anchor, CNN International and HLN
• Mabel van Oranje, Chair, Girls Not Brides
The 2015 Countdown Summit also featured the launch of the A World at School Youth Ambassadors Programme.