Global Citizen conference to unite political leaders, celebs

NEW YORK (AP) — Advocacy group Global Citizen will convene political, philanthropic, business and cultural leaders for a thought leadership conference in New York to tackle extreme poverty more quickly.

The group announced Tuesday that Global Citizen NOW will be a two-day conference beginning April 27, co-chaired by Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, as well as leaders of Barbados and Ghana, along with Coldplay’s Chris Martin and Tony winner and “Wolverine” star Hugh Jackman. Executives from Verizon, Cisco, Citi, and Procter & Gamble will join philanthropic leaders from Ford, Open Society, PepsiCo and Rockefeller foundations.

“We’re bringing together this extraordinary group of amazing leaders, and everything is focused on action taking, and on impact,” said Hugh Evans, Global Citizen CEO. “We’re not going to host a single panel, a single session, unless there’s an action to be taken out of it.”

The conference plans to create collaboration between various sectors to spur “urgent action” to end extreme poverty.

According to a Nature Energy report published last week, the energy crisis triggered by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine could push 141 million people globally into extreme poverty because of increased costs for fuel and the higher prices for goods and services.

That would be on top of the 100 million people who COVID-19 returned to extreme poverty that the inaugural Global Citizen NOW tried to help last year.

“We see an opportunity to disrupt the model of global forums where world leaders get in a closed room and have private conversations that affect our planet and the next generation,” Evans said in a statement. “Money and solutions are on the table but aren’t deployed. Nothing changes and there’s no one to hold them accountable. We’re focused on turning ideas into impact.”


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Glenn Gamboa, The Associated Press