Dubbed the “Spanish enchantress,” Oscar-nominated Penélope Cruz was born in Madrid in 1974 and was performing on screen by the time she was a toddler. She became the leading lady of Spanish cinema during the 1990s, and was soon in demand in Hollywood too, starring in movies such as Vanilla Sky and Captain Corelli’s Mandolin.

In 2007, she was nominated for a best actress Academy Award for the Spanish film Volver.

Cruz spent two months volunteering in Uganda in 1997, and later took time out to visit Mother Teresa’s children’s sanctuary in Calcutta. An actress with a conscience, she even set up her own non-governmental organisation to support homeless girls and tuberculosis sufferers in India.

Now Cruz is using her voice to speak out about the 800 million people who live on the razor-thin edge of starvation in Public Service Announcements recorded for WFP. She has also made a corporate video calling for support for the agency in its efforts to stop 24,000 people dying of hunger every day.

"We need to stop the dying and start the living; stop the hunger and start the hoping " - Penélope Cruz

Partner profile

Profession: film actress. Won a Best Actress Goya in 1998 for her role in "La Niña de tus ojos", and a David di Donatello award in 2004 for her performance in the Italian film "Non ti muovere".

WFP partner since: February 2005