Global Citizen is a community of people like you

People who want to learn about and take action on the world’s biggest challenges. Extreme poverty ends with you.

Global Citizen
ImpactDemand Equity

These Global Leaders Are Coming to the 2018 Global Citizen Festival Stage to Fight Poverty

This year’s Global Citizen Festival in New York takes place on Sept. 29, and more than 2 million actions have been taken so far in support of our campaigns to end extreme poverty. 

With amazing musicians like Janet Jackson, The Weeknd, and Shawn Mendes performing Saturday night, Global Citizens already have a lot to look forward to. But with a host of global leaders and influencers also in attendance, the festival is a great way to shed light on the serious issues that the world’s extreme poor are facing. The festival also serves as the stage for governments to commit to making a difference — a difference that will count.

“How can we make sure everyone has an opportunity to reach their potential? By investing in people. Join me at the Global Citizen Festival, along with activists and leaders working for a more stable and equitable world. Let’s be the first generation to end poverty.” - Dr Jim Kim, President, World Bank Group

Here’s a list list of US and Foreign Dignitaries participating in the festival and events include:


  • Epsy Campbell Barr, Vice President of Costa Rica (Leveling the Law for Women and Girls by 2030 Reception, 25 September)
  • Gaston Browne, Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda
  • Simon Coveney, Tánaiste (Deputy Head of Government); Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Ireland
  • Abubacarr Tambadou, Attorney General & Minister of Justice, Gambia
  • Nikolai Astrup, Minister of International Development, Norway
  • Ulla Tørnæs, Minister for Development Cooperation of Denmark
  • Lindiwe Sisulu, Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, South Africa
  • Jeff Radebe,  Minister of Energy, South Africa, and Global Citizen Ambassador
  • Harriett Baldwin, Minister of State for Africa at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Minister of State at the UK Department for International Development (Leveling the Law for Women and Girls by 2030 Reception, 25 September)
  • Herman Mashaba, ​Executive Mayor of the City of Johannesburg


  • Dr Jim Kim, President, World Bank Group (Movement Makers, 25 September)
  • Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary General, United Nations
  • Dr. Tedros Adhanom, Director-General, World Health Organization
  • Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director, UN Women
  • Dr. Natalia Kanem, Executive Director, UNFPA
  • Julia Gillard, Chair Global Partnership for Education
  • Yasmine Sherif, Director, Education Cannot Wait (ECW)
  • Fei Yu, Deputy Representative, North America, Asian Development Bank


  • Eric Gonzalez, District Attorney, Brooklyn
  • Tori Salazar, District Attorney, San Joaquin County
  • Aramis Ayala, State Attorney, Ninth Judicial Circuit Court of Florida
  • Hakeem Jeffries, US Representative, New York
  • Chris Coons, US Senator, Delaware
  • Nancy F. Muñoz, Assemblywoman, New Jersey
  • Larry Sharpe, gubernatorial candidate, New York
  • Stephanie Miner, Mayor for Syracuse and gubernatorial candidate, New York
  • Howie Hawkins, gubernatorial candidate, New York
  • Penny Abeywardena, International Affairs Commissioner for Global Affairs

In June, alongside the European Development Days, Global Citizen launched the #SheIsEqual campaign in support of gender equality and female empowerment. At this year’s festival there are several countries that are standing up for female empowerment and gender equality to ensure health, education, and opportunity for girls and women everywhere.

The Gambia is the smallest country in West Africa, but they are set to take the biggest step towards gender equality in the region, repealing and reforming laws that perpetuate inequality. Read more about their commitment here.

“We are happy to be attending the Global Citizen Festival in New York on the 29th of September and applaud the immense work that Global Citizen is doing through its highly effect campaigns such as this and others like the #SheisEqual Campaign. We take this opportunity to renew our commitment to the protection and advancement of the rights of girls and women and reaffirm our belief that only through genuine and concerted efforts can we indeed #LeveltheLaw.”- Abubacarr Tambadou, Attorney General and Minister of Justice, The Gambia

A spotlight will also be shone at women’s health and sexual and reproductive rights.

“On behalf of UNFPA, allow me to thank you for the invitation to participate in the 2018 Global Citizen Festival. It would be my honour to be able to share the stage with advocates that use their voice to advance our mandate, particularly around sexual reproductive health and rights, honing in on family planning.”- Dr. Natalia Kanem, Executive Director, UNFPA

Extreme poverty can only end if those in a privileged position help those who are not. Cue Ireland. Ireland stands as a country with one of the highest growth rates in Europe and Deputy Prime Minister Simon Coveney is set to commit to increasing Ireland’s overseas aid spending to 0.7% of its Gross National Income. Here’s more about Ireland’s historic commitment.

US Senator Coon also stressed the importance of the US in stepping up to make foreign aid a priority.

“The United States should support democracy and development around the world, not only out of charity, but also because it provides economic opportunity, prevents global pandemics, and builds effective institutions that foster stability. I’m proud to be a Global Citizen and promote American values through investments that save lives, fight poverty, and promote human rights and fundamental freedoms worldwide.”- Christopher Coons, Senator, Delaware

Earlier this week at a High Level event that Global Citizen co-hosted, Norway expressed that investing in education was the most valuable investment that they can make.

“I support the Global Citizen Movement because the challenges people and the planet are facing are global. This movement expands and strengthens awareness, engagement, action and results for sustainable development. I take part in the Global Citizen Festival because it offers a magnificent opportunity to rally activists and world leaders around pressing global development issues.”- Nikolai Astrup, Minister of International Development, Norway