The face of some of the world's most exclusive products has now become the new face of global environmental action.
On 20 September, Brazil-born Gisele Bündchen, one of the most recognized top models of all time, was designated Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
As Goodwill Ambassador, Gisele Bündchen will help UNEP in its mission to raise awareness and inspire action to protect the environment. The new Goodwill Ambassador will help focus attention on some of the biggest threats facing the planet, climate change and environmental degradation.
The designation of Gisele as Goodwill Ambassador took place at New York's Washington Square Park Fountain, where hundreds of fans and journalists assembled to witness the supermodel accept her new role.
Gisele Bündchen, a true environmentalist in her own right, said:
"I'm really honoured to join UNEP's work on the environment. The environment has always been my passion. I grew up in a small town and I had the opportunity to live surrounded by nature. I couldn't have asked for a better childhood. We must act now, so future generations have the same opportunity. Mother Earth is our fundamental life-support system, and by becoming aware and responsible now, we can assist in preserving the planet."
She added: "I have been working on environmental issues for a long time and agreed to become a Goodwill Ambassador to be part of a global and far-reaching organization. Now it's about action on a global scale to secure a healthy future for the next generation, wherever they live in the world."
On climate change, Gisele noted, "Climate change is something we can't deny? It affects all of us. At the end of the day, it's our planet ? we all have to feel accountable."
Achim Steiner, UN Under-Secretary-General and UNEP Executive Director said: "Gisele is among a handful of talented individuals and personalities that have a truly global reach. She is also a committed and passionate environmentalist. UNEP is delighted to welcome her on board as a Goodwill Ambassador so that with her help, we can make environmental action a global brand and a life-style choice, from New York to Nairobi and from Sao Paolo to Shanghai."
NOTES TO EDITORS:
For high-resolution photos of the event visit: http://www.unep.org/downloads/gisele
The following photos will be available for download:
0223: Gisele walks into Washington Square to announce her new role as UNEP Goodwill Ambassador
0278: Gisele Bündchen announces her new role as UNEP Goodwill Ambassador, wearing a t-shirt hand painted by a Kenyan artist for the Seal the Deal! climate campaign
0439: Gisele Bündchen in Washington Square announcing her new role as UNEP Goodwill Ambassador
0709: UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner announces Gisele Bündchen as UNEP's new Goodwill Ambassador, with Girl Scouts in the background wearing life vests to symbolize rising sea levels
0068: Gisele Bündchen talks to the media as UNEP announces her appointment as UNEP Goodwill Ambassador
0105: Gisele Bündchen and Achim Steiner, who were both born in Brazil, announce Gisele's new role as UNEP Goodwill Ambassador
0122: Gisele Bündchen and Achim Steiner
0657: Gisele smiles as Girl Scouts look on
Seal the Deal! is a UN-wide outreach campaign to galvanize political will and public support for reaching a comprehensive global climate agreement in Copenhagen in December.
For more information please contact:
Nick Nuttall, UNEP Spokesperson and Head of Media, on Tel: +254 20 7623084, Mobile: +254 733 632755, or when travelling: +41 795965737, or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org =
Anne-France White, UNEP Media, Mobile: +254 728 600 494 or +1 347 633 5015
Lucita Jasmin, UNEP Head of Special Events, Mobile: +254 (0) 713 601 244 or e-mail: Lucita.Jasmin@unep.org