CULLOMPTON, United Kingdom — Idris Elba is an English actor who has been advocating for the world’s poorest along with his wife, Sabrina Dhowre Elba. Both of them are goodwill ambassadors for the U.N.’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and have called for more investment to help the world’s poor. They became ambassadors in April 2020 and as part of this role, they focus on issues relating to food security, climate change and environmental conservation.
World Economic Forum Meeting
In January 2023, Idris Elba made his appeal for more investment at the opening ceremony of the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland. The WEF “engages the foremost political, business, cultural and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas.” Established in 1971, it is independent, impartial and not tied to any special interests. It believes that progress happens when different people with different backgrounds are brought together and share their drive and influence to make a positive change.
Idris Elba attended the 2023 WEF annual meeting where he pleaded for more investment. At the conference, he stated that “The poor of this world are not just looking for aid and handouts, they’re looking for investment.” Sabrina Dhowre Elba also stated that “We are here at Davos to highlight the people and countries who are not making the headlines as much as my husband.”
“Despite global commitments to end hunger by 2030, donor support for agriculture has been standing still at 4% of the total Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) for at least two decades,” according to Farmers Review Africa. Investment in these countries to help tackle poverty is vital in the overarching fight to end the suffering caused by extreme poverty.
2023 Crystal Award
On top of this, the Elba’s received the 2023 Crystal Award for their leadership in championing and advocating on behalf of the millions of people living in extreme poverty and the small-scale farmers who produce one-third of the world’s food.
The Crystal Award is “in its 29th year and it honors exceptional artists and cultural leaders who have done work that contributes to improving the state of the world.” The winners “have an attitude of openness and the spirit of Davos,” according to WEF.
This is not the first time that Idris Elba has helped in the fight against poverty. In 2020, he was among more than 2,000 campaigners who backed an open letter addressed to world leaders which urged those leaders to “tackle the emergency facing people and planet” by taking action to fight climate change, poverty and inequality.
He also attended the “Defeating Ebola in Sierra Leone” conference in October 2014, where they met and rallied global support to contain, control and defeat Ebola in Sierra Leone. Furthermore, Elba has worked with the U.N. and filmed campaigns to support UNICEF and the Sustainable Development Goals campaign.
– Ruby Wallace