Jose Mourinho Joins Push For Zero Hunger As New WFP Ambassador

Published on 19 May 2014

LONDON – One of the world’s most successful football managers, Jose Mourinho, has been announced as an Ambassador Against Hunger for the United Nations World Food Programme.  Mourinho, who is currently the manager of Chelsea Football Club in the English Premier League, will use his status to raise awareness about WFP’s life-saving work and champion the Zero Hunger Challenge which aims to eliminate hunger in our lifetimes.

“Jose Mourinho has achieved almost every success at the top of the game of football and we are delighted that he is now taking on a new challenge to help us reach zero hunger,” said WFP Deputy Executive Director, and Chief Operating Officer, Amir Abdulla.  “We need strong, respected and committed partners to help us eliminate hunger in our lifetimes and I have no doubt Jose will deliver in his role as a WFP Ambassador Against Hunger.”

Mourinho - whose wife Matilde is also being appointed as a WFP Special Ambassador for school feeding - is expected to visit WFP operations in sub-Saharan Africa in the coming weeks.

“Supporting the work of the World Food Programme on the frontlines of hunger is a personal decision about a cause that is very close to the hearts of me and my family,” Mourinho said.  “If we can harness the spirit and the will to address the nutritional needs of the poor, then we have a real chance of ending hunger in our lifetimes.”

Mourinho has achieved the remarkable feat of coaching teams that have twice won the UEFA Champions League, as well as picking up multiple awards as winners of their domestic league titles in Spain, Italy, Portugal and England.  As a WFP Ambassador Against Hunger, Mourinho joins a group of international celebrities and athletes, including the actress, Drew Barrymore, the singer, Christina Aguilera, and the footballer, Kaka.

“Our team of Ambassadors Against Hunger provide a powerful voice for the hungry,” said Abdulla.  “Their status and the support they draw among millions of fans around the world helps us to get the message out that reaching zero hunger is an achievable target and the right target for our times.”

Hunger Facts:

•    842 million people in the world do not have enough to eat.
•    Poor nutrition causes nearly half of all deaths among children under the age of 5 years.
•    66 million primary school children attend classes hungry across the developing world.
•    One in four of the world’s children are stunted and in some developing countries, this figure can be as high as one in three.

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WFP is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide.  Each year, on average, WFP feeds more than 90 million people in more than 80 countries.

Recent broadcast quality video footage of WFP operations is available on request.  Please email: gregory.barrow@wfp.org

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For more information please contact (email address: firstname.lastname@wfp.org):
Gregory Barrow, WFP/London, Tel.  +44 20 72409001, Mob.  +44 7968 008474
Emilia Casella, WFP/Rome, Tel. +39 06 6513 3854, Mob. +39 347 9450634
Elisabeth Byrs, WFP/Geneva, Tel. +41 22 917 8564, Mob. +41 79 473 4570
Bettina Luescher, WFP/New York, Tel. +1-646-5566909, Mob.  +1-646-8241112