Over the last 10 years, Global Citizens have taken over 33.5 million actions to defend our planet, advocate for the most vulnerable, and make the invisible visible to world leaders.
Every year from the Global Citizen Festival stage, critical financial and policy commitments are made to advance progress on the United Nations Global Goals and keep the world on track to end extreme poverty by 2030.
Impact is created when people, leaders, and activists unite to take action on issues that matter.
In the second year of the Global Citizen NOW action summit, held in New York City on April 27 and 28, the two-day program once again brought together activists, artists, and world leaders to facilitate discussion and cross-sector collaboration to drive action to solve the most urgent issues facing humanity and our planet — with some big announcements.
Global Citizen Announces That a Decade of Citizen-led Action Has Helped Impact 1.29 Billion Lives So Far
On Thursday, Global Citizen CEO and Co-Founder, Hugh Evans announced the remarkable impact of Global Citizens’ actions in the summit’s opening panel, “How Ideas Become Impact”, alongside long-time Global Citizen Ambassador Hugh Jackman, President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, humanitarian and Global Citizen Europe Board Chair Sabrina Dhowre Elba, and CBS Mornings co-host Gayle King.
“Here we are, 10 concerts now in Central Park, and there have been 33 million actions taken by Global Citizens; there's been $43 billion raised because of those actions, and 1.3 billion lives affected,” Jackman told the audience.
Wrapping up an inspiring and insightful two days at @GlblCtzn where citizens from around the world participated in discussions on topics like climate, hunger, biodiversity and how to end extreme poverty now. pic.twitter.com/cWjHbWDq0A— Hugh Evans (@Hughcevans) April 30, 2023
To date, $43.6 billion in funding has been disbursed by governments, corporations, philanthropists, and more to organizations on the front lines of the world's biggest crises — and as a result of those commitments, more than 1.29 billion people have experienced intervention to help lift them out of extreme poverty.
The World’s Largest Foundations Unite for Global Citizen ‘Power Our Planet’ Campaign, and Support PM Mia Mottley’s Bridgetown Agenda to Unlock $1 Trillion for Vulnerable Nations
Prime Minister of Barbados Mia Mottley joined Hugh Jackman and Hugh Evans on stage to announce the Global Citizen campaign Power Our Planet, to demand urgent global financial reform to free up the funds needed to build a sustainable, equitable, and just world.
"The Power our Planet campaign calls for three big changes: governments need to deliver on past promises of $16.7 billion in climate funding for vulnerable countries that have been promised but not yet delivered,” said Evans.
As part of the campaign, two other requests are being put to world leaders: development banks need to reform in order to free up funding; and, big polluters need to do their part to combat climate change.
The world is at a crossroads.— Mia Amor Mottley (@miaamormottley) April 29, 2023
A series of crises threaten the lives and livelihoods of millions of people across the globe.
The @GlblCtzn#PowerOurPlanet campaign, which draws from The Bridgetown Initiative, calls for us to act now to save our tomorrow. pic.twitter.com/asgDFF7fJc
Climate Justice Activist and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, Vanessa Nakate joined Mottley, Chris Martin, Lead Singer of Coldplay and Global Citizen International Festival Curator, and Dr. Rajiv Shah, President of the Rockefeller Foundation on stage to discuss the urgency of climate change and its impacts on the world's most marginalized communities.
“Loss and damage are about understanding that we need a systemic solution so people don't go hungry because of climate change's impacts on agriculture, or because of the current economy's impacts on interest rates,” said Shah, the panel’s moderator.
“The climate crisis is wreaking havoc on so many communities, not only across Africa but across the Global South,” added Nakate. “Many people are being pushed beyond the places of adaptation — you cannot adapt to the loss of your cultures; you cannot adapt to the loss of your history; you cannot adapt to starvation.”
I moderated a panel at #GlobalCitizenNOW where climate activist @vanessa_vash, Barbados PM and my friend @miaamormottley and Chris Martin of @coldplay shared their perspectives on what is needed to combat #climatechange between now and the Paris summit. pic.twitter.com/TFkwBvMlGp— Dr. Rajiv J. Shah (@rajshah) April 28, 2023
Education Cannot Wait Announces Remaining Financial Target to Meet $675 Million to Ensure Children Access Education in Crisis
Every child deserves access to education, especially in times of emergencies — a message reiterated on the Global Citizen NOW panel, “Education Cannot Wait”, hosted by Executive Director of the UN organization Education Cannot Wait, Yasmine Sherif, in discussion with actress, humanitarian, and Global Citizen Ambassador, Nomzamo Mbatha, and the US Government Special Envoy for the Human Rights of LGBTI Persons, Jessica Stern.
“We look at countries that are underdeveloped, countries that are developing, and we see that when you do not put the national interest at the top of your list and you put corruption instead, you do not free your people,” said Mbatha. “You do not have it, you are unable to give quality education, especially in public schools where it matters most, because that is where the grassroots level is.”
To help more than 7 million children living in crisis and currently without access to education, Sherif called on governments and businesses to meet the $620 million funding shortfall to continue Education Cannot Wait’s humanitarian work and educate millions of children in crisis.
“We hope that everyone will join forces together with the US and Canada and the European Commission and many, many more, UK, Germany,” said Sherif. “We can't rely on governments alone — we need a private sector that believes in this kind of work from an entrepreneurship approach.”
#ECW Executive Director @YasmineSherif1 thanks @CanadianPM@JustinTrudeau for #Canada’s ongoing strong leadership in support of #EducationCannotWait.🇨🇦@GlblCtzn@CanadaDev@CanadaUN@GlblCtznImpact#GlobalCitizenNow 🇨🇦 pic.twitter.com/cwB7BHGtMe— Education Cannot Wait (@EduCannotWait) April 27, 2023
President Macron Calls on World Leaders and Corporates to Attend the Paris Climate Finance Summit & Unlock $1 Trillion for the Poorest and Most Climate Vulnerable Countries
Joe Scarborough, former US Congressman and co-host of “Morning Joe” on MSNBC, took the stage at Global Citizen NOW to introduce French President Emmanuel Macron in an exclusive interview going in-depth on climate finance, and the role of multilateral and government support for low- and middle-income countries impacted by climate change.
“We have to build a new consensus now, fight against poverty, decarbonize our economy, precisely to get to a carbon neutrality by 2050, and to fight for biodiversity,” said Macron. “We need this country-by-country approach and we have to be very precise on how to re-engage public money on the bilateral multilateral side and private money.”
At Global Citizen NOW to discuss the Summit on a New Global Financial Pact we will host in Paris in June.— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) April 28, 2023
World leaders, investors, civil society actors, let's all meet there to make a difference! pic.twitter.com/U5Z3hovKr3
Livestreaming on MSNBC and addressing audiences in the room at NOW, Macron also took the opportunity to introduce an upcoming climate finance summit to be hosted in Paris, on June 23 and 24, which will take place against the backdrop of the Global Citizen Power Our Planet campaign.
“The Paris Summit is a mechanism for the private sector and for the richest countries, through very clear commitments and approaches, to invest the right amount of money and bridge the [financing]," said Macron.
IFAD Calls for Urgent Investments to Close the Financing Gap and Increase the Incomes of Over 40 Million People & PepsiCo Foundation Announces Support for Global Citizen Prize Recipient Wangari Kuria
Moderated by Enrique Acevedo, Anchor for NMás and News Contributor for CBS, the Global Citizen NOW panel “Seeding the Future” featured panelists including President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) Alvaro Lario; Global Citizen Prize recipient and Founder & CEO of Kenya-based Farmer on Fire Ltd Wangari Kuria; the PepsiCo Foundation President, C.D. Glin; and Citi’s Executive Vice President, Edward Skyler.
The panel examined the issue of food insecurity and how smallholder farmers can be supported to help fight hunger worldwide as part of the discussion on climate change and its impacts, including fuelling the global hunger crisis.
“It’s not only about managing poverty and hunger but actually about eliminating it,” said Lario. “It's very clear that unless we invest in resilience and improving livelihoods, we are not going to end hunger and poverty — we can continue saving lives, but that's not enough.”
We need more Women in Agriculture at the table contributing to critical decision making not just in the farms@FarmerOnFire_ in a panel discussion on food security with @IFADPresident@PepsiCo@cdglin, @Citi moderated by @EAcevedo_fanspic.twitter.com/bRkeec8CNF— Farmer on Fire Ltd (@farmeronfire1) April 29, 2023
In a surprise announcement, Glin, on behalf of the PepsiCo Foundation, announced a $10,000 donation to the Farmer on Fire Ltd organization that Kuria leads.
“This will lead us in the right direction of making sure that we're empowering other people around us to also be food sufficient and also be economically empowered,” said Kuria following the announcement.
Re:wild Invests $5 Million to Amazon Reforestation Efforts Within Brazil to Combat Climate Change
During Friday’s Global Citizen NOW panel “Action in the Amazon” — moderated by Michael Sheldrick, Global Citizen’s Chief Policy, Impact, and Government Relations Officer, and featuring leading voices championing environmentalism and climate protection including 2023 Global Citizen Prize recipient and Global Coordinator and Co-Founder of the Loss and Damage Youth Coalition Ineza Umuhoza Grace, and Senior Brazil Associate of Re:wild Rodrigo Medeiros — climate organization Re:wild pledged to re-invest $5 million to support reforestation efforts in the Amazon.
“The destruction of the Amazon rainforest is a tragedy. Only one industry is driving 90% of that destruction — the cattle industry — and it’s tragic,” said Medeiros.
.@micksheldrick is joined on the #GlobalCitizenNOW stage by Rodrigo Medeiros, @helderbarbalho, Mauro O' de Almeida, HE Dr. Tariq Al Gurg, and #GCPrize winner Ineza Grace for our panel discussion, ‘Action in the Amazon’. pic.twitter.com/9PUrScLYY6— Global Citizen ⭕ (@GlblCtzn) April 28, 2023
The pledge and discussion follow important commitments made at the 2021 Global Citizen Festival, when Re:wild and the Center for Environmental Peacebuilding joined forces with Coldplay to help protect Brazil's Amazon Rainforest and the Northeast region from climate change — calling on six of Brazil's governors to prioritize environmentalists and the needs of communities living within the Brazilian Amazon.
“Actions do make a difference,” added Sheldrick.
The Body Shop International and Lush Cosmetics - North America Become the First Companies to Sign the Global Citizen Anti-Slapp Pledge
Also held on Friday, the panel "Speaking Out: Defending Human Rights” — moderated by CBS News National Correspondent and CBS Mornings featured host Vladimir Duthiers — saw panelists Global Citizen Prize recipient and Executive Director of LEARN Afghanistan Pashtana Durrani and President of the Ford Foundation Darren Walker discuss how the global community can contribute to the protection of civic space and human rights defenders.
During the panel, The Body Shop’s International Director of Sustainability, Activism, and Communications, Chris Davis announced the company's commitment as one of the first to sign the Global Citizen Anti-SLAPP Pledge — recognizing that strategic lawsuits against public participation, or SLAPPs, are not a legitimate business strategy for companies and are a threat to free speech and civic space.
“We do not believe activists should be silenced. We do not believe businesses should ever silence activists,” said Davis.
👏👏@lushcosmetics just pledged to sign the Global Citizen Anti-SLAPP pledge at #GlobalCitizenNOW, recognizing that strategic lawsuits against public participation are not a legitimate business strategy for companies! https://t.co/ahYHwMjqW4— Global Citizen Impact (@GlblCtznImpact) April 28, 2023
British cosmetics retailer LUSH also signed the pledge, showing solidarity with the right to freedom of expression “without fear of intimidation or reprisal”. “Thank you for talking to us about the importance of protecting human rights and the value of civic spaces,” said Duthiers.
Miss Universe Reiterates the Importance of the 'Period for Change' Campaign & Global Menstrual Equity Accelerator
Globally, one in 10 menstruating women live in extreme poverty, and more than 500 million women and girls lack effective menstrual care products and education. Global Citizen is campaigning to support the newly-established Global Menstrual Equity Accelerator (GMEA) by urging world leaders, particularly leaders of the Commonwealth, to enact legislation and commit to ending period poverty once and for all.
In September 2022, at Global Citizen Festival in Central Park, the “Period For Change” campaign was launched in support of the Global Menstrual Equity Accelerator — a new initiative created by DDB For Good, Plan India, the Miss Universe Organization, and P&G period care brands Always and Whisper.
The goal of this initiative is to catalyze and expand support for organizations pursuing menstrual health equity, working to unite new stakeholders, channeling more energy, and ensuring the flow of new resources to support local and community-based menstrual equity initiatives across the globe — specifically working with implementation partners in high prevalence communities that can scale up efforts with sustainable, multi-year funding and support.
Harnaaz Sandhu, activist and 2021 Miss Universe, and Ghanaian broadcast journalist and menstrual health activist Abena Soreno spoke at Global Citizen NOW on Thursday about the importance of the “Period For Change” campaign and how all stakeholders can get involved.
JUST Capital and Global Citizen Announce Launch of Corporate Care Network
JUST Capital and Global Citizen announced a collaboration that will work to help create great workplaces where all employees and their families can thrive.
The Corporate Care Network is a network for companies committed to advancing the well-being of workers and demonstrating the long-term value of the investment in workers through access to care benefits, like paid leave and flexible work policies.
Companies in the collective will gain access to leading research and data insights on benchmarks and best practices, opportunities to exchange ideas and information with a network of peers, and spotlights on executives who have overcome hurdles to help drive change in their organizations.
As business leaders consider solutions to shape an inclusive recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and take action to advance racial and gender equity in their workplaces, the Corporate Care Network brings together cross-sector innovators and peers to share and develop tangible solutions, resources, and research to meet the needs of their organizations.
Global Citizen and JUST Capital will continue to call on companies, brands, and business leaders to join the Corporate Care Network and make a commitment to workers, families, and communities by prioritizing care, reinforcing the case for care, and making care visible.