Star-Studded Global Citizen Festival

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NEW YORK — Global Citizen is an organization that believes firmly in the termination of extreme poverty by 2030.  Its members are committed to changing the systems and policies that have historically kept people impoverished.

For the third year in a row, the Global Citizen Festival has raised money and awareness for a worthwhile cause. This year, performing celebrities are endorsing their support for the work of the GAVI Alliance.

The festival uses a high-profile technique to engage world leaders in making authentic and palpable commitments in three areas of concern.

Vaccines have made possible some of the greatest public health successes. According to an Oxfam report, immunization helped to avert an estimated 2.5 million child deaths per year, in addition to the prevention of disease and disabilities.

Global Citizen is campaigning to aid the GAVI Alliance by raising $7.5 billion dollars for the immunization of 300 million children within five years, starting in 2015. They estimate that this can save 5 million to 6 million lives.

Another area of concern is providing proper education for children. Globally, 1 in 10 children go without an education and, as a result, many become susceptible to various forms of violence. Some wealthy countries, including the United States, have cut back their aid, and as a result Global Citizen is shining an international spotlight on education with a commitment to ensuring that girls have equal and sustained access to schooling.

They are accomplishing this with the help of the Global Partnership for Education which solidified $2.1 billion for this purpose in June.

The final point of concern for the festival is sanitation. One out of three people worldwide live without adequate sanitation. The effects resound even more for women and girls, whose domestic lives could be completely changed with clean water.

To meet these needs, Global Citizen is specifically campaigning for the passage of the Water for the World act through U.S. Congress.

On July 9th, free tickets became available for people who participated in a series of actions, which included learning about the number of lives saved by immunization, signing the GAVI Petition for global child immunization and learning about the ways the Water for the World Act is helping people worldwide.

The festival will be held Saturday, Sept. 27 on the Great Lawn and the headliners will be No Doubt, Jay Z, Carrie Underwood, fun., The Roots and DJ Tiesto.

As technology advances and America becomes more economically and politically connected with other nations, the concept of Americans having global citizenship remains inconspicuous. A global citizen is a person who identifies him or herself as one in a larger, emerging world community. Within this community he or she has the ability to learn values and practices.

The public needs to pull back the dark veil that inhibits it from seeing the world as one. Events like the Global Citizen Festival help to do this.

Ashley Riley

Sources: Open Democracy, Look To The Stars, Global Citizen
Photo: Global Citizen

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