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Grey Hutton for Global Citizen

Chris Martin's Advocacy Proves We Can Be the Generation to End Extreme Poverty

Why Global Citizens Should Care
Nelson Mandela believed that we could be the generation to end extreme poverty. Global Citizens like Chris Martin use their influence to call on worlds leaders to help achieve Mandela’s goal. You can use your voice too — take action now.

Around the world, Coldplay fans know Chris Martin as the award-winning band’s frontman — an energetic lead singer, rhythm guitarist, and exceptional pianist. But to Global Citizens, he’s a champion for change, a powerful voice, an activist — and Global Citizen Festival curator.

Martin joined Global Citizen in 2015 and has taken part in Global Citizen festivals in India, Hamburg, and New York. On Dec. 2, he’ll join the likes of Beyoncé, Ed Sheeran, Trevor Noah, Oprah, and more at Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100, presented and hosted by the Motsepe Foundation, in Johannesburg.

When Coldplay debuted its album “Parachutes” in 2000, the band quickly rose to fame. Since then, they group has continued to succeed with hits like “Clocks,” “The Scientist,” and “Kaleidoscope.” Most recently, the band released a new track under the name Los Unidades, as part of the “Global Citizen EP 1,” which Martin has been the driving force behind. They performed at the Super Bowl halftime show in 2016, and Martin has gone on to collaborate with Nelly Furtado, JAY-Z, and Kanye West, too.

Take Action: Be the Generation to End Extreme Poverty

But Martin’s talents extend far beyond that of alternative music.

Martin has campaigned on a number of global issues in the past, pointedly calling on world leaders to deliver commitments needed to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

In 2005, Martin joined Oxfam on a trip to Ghana, where he met with Ghanaian farmers to speak about the need for fair trade policies.

“I thought, ‘I’m going to learn as much as I can and meet as many people as possible,’” he told the Sun newspaper.

He later travelled to Haiti and Mexico to further understand trade injustice and its impact on the world’s poorest communities.

Martin has played at a number of charity concerts, including Hope for Haiti Now: A Global Benefit For Earthquake Relief, Amnesty International’s Secret Policeman’s Ball, Band Aid 30, an event in light of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, and a concert at Kensington Palace that raised money for HIV/AIDS prevention.

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As a band, Coldplay donates 10% of their profits to charity and has worked with 30 charities, according to Look to the Stars. More than that, Coldplay invests their time and energy into global issues, playing shows for free and inviting organizations like Global Citizen to tour with them and raise awareness at their concerts.

“Global Citizen is about love and togetherness and that is what our band is about, too,” Martin said during Coldplay’s set at Global Citizen Festival India in 2016.

Global Citizen campaigns on the SDGs, including increasing access to education, clean water and sanitation, gender equality, global health, and more, all in order to eradicate poverty by 2030.

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And as the Global Citizen Festival curator, Martin has worked tirelessly with the organization for many years to truly understand the world’s biggest problems — and their possible solutions — while inspiring hundreds of thousands of Global Citizens to take action to end extreme poverty.

He uses his voice and musical platform to speak out against the world’s injustices — and remind us that we have the power to make the world a better place.

Martin joins Global Citizen in Johannesburg this weekend to celebrate the year marking what would have been Nelson Mandela’s 100th birthday, encouraging Global Citizens to take action to be the generation to end extreme poverty. If you have tickets, we’ll see you there. If not, don’t worry — you can tune in to watch from home.

The Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100 is presented and hosted by The Motsepe Foundation, with major partners House of Mandela, Johnson & Johnson, Cisco, Nedbank, Vodacom, Coca Cola Africa, Big Concerts, BMGF Goalkeepers, Eldridge Industries, and associate partners HP and Microsoft.