The first Global Citizen festival was held yesterday in Central Park on the Great Lawn. Bands including, the Foo Fighters, Neil Young, Crazy Horse, The Black Keys, and K’naan were in attendance. Another highlight of the night’s events included a prerecorded premiere of Beyoncé’s new video shoot at the UN.
The Festival was supported by multiple organizations including, Rotary International, Earth Institute, US for UNICEF, Pencils of Promise, Malaria No More, Half The Sky, Global Partnership for Education, World Food Program USA, and Earth Day Network.
While music brought everyone to the event, the focus was on inspiring the world to come together, and become “global citizens.” The 60,000 people who attended received their free ticket by signing on as a global citizen and performing a few tasks to earn it–an interesting strategy for gaining awareness and engagement for the Global Poverty Project, and the Global Festival. If you couldn’t attend in person, The Festival was live streamed for the world as the largest syndicated charity concert.
Sprinkled throughout the evening, change makers spoke with passion about some of the world’s most pressing issues.
Did you know hunger kills more people than malaria, tuberculosis and Aids combined? And one in 7 people go to bed hungry. Ironically we have enough food to feed the whole world. So why are people going hungry? Natural disasters, war, economics and over exploitation of the environment are just some of the reasons.
Women are dying every day from pregnancy and pregnancy complications. In some countries like the U.S. it’s simply access to health insurance. In other countries it’s telecommunications, which would give access to health care workers.
Exploitation of women and young girls is a global issue. Violence, gender discrimination and poverty are just some of the issues at hand. But no human should be forced into essentially slavery.
Education of girls:
Millions of young girls don’t have access to education across the globe. They end up marrying young, having children and this keeps them in poverty. Studies show if you educate a girl, you change not only her situation, but the family and community where she lives.
We are so close to eliminating polio. Only three countries are polio-endemic. India, which once carried most of the world’s polio cases, was declared polio-free. But in some cases it’s back and when it comes back it’s been shown to be more virulent.
While the concert may have passed, you can still become a Global Citizen by signing the petition to get the world’s leaders to fund the gap needed to address these important issues.
The petition can be found here.
You can also join the conversation on Facebook.