From a Cairo garbage collector to an Islamic scholar, Egyptian actor Mahmoud Yassin has played an amazing variety of characters in a career spanning five decades. But his commitment to fighting poverty has given Yassin his most challenging role yet - working as a WFP Ambassador to help raise awareness in Arab-speaking communities of the world's 840 million chronically hungry people.
"I believe that anyone who can offer something to a hungry woman or a child to make life more bearable should not hesitate to do so, no matter what he or she has. As the saying goes, what is little becomes more when it is given in aid," he says.
Yassin made his debut performance as a WFP Ambassador in September 2004, appearing in the agency's first-ever Arabic public service announcement. But Yassin's commitment to humanitarian work stretches back 22 years, to his appointmnt as chairman of the Actors, Journalists and Authors of Giza Charity Association, which helps poverty-stricken people living in Giza, a province located directly across the Nile from Cairo. "Every human has a heart that should feel for the problems of humanity, but the artist should be the one who feels it more deeply than others because an artist deals with human souls," says Yassin. "They are the material with which he works."