In March 2005, model, activist and mother Liya Kebede was appointed the World Health Organization's Goodwill Ambassador for Maternal Newborn and Child Health. As Goodwill Ambassador, Liya worked alongside the WHO to raise awareness and improve the health of mothers and children worldwide.
Liya worked to link WHO initiatives with the programs of the Liya Kebede Foundation and served as an advocate for the WHO's efforts to save mothers lives. She has travelled to her home country of Ethiopia, Europe and China among other places to promote maternal health.
The WHO has a number of programs designed to end maternal mortality. Through its Making Pregnancy Safer program, the WHO has brought health care to hundereds of thousands of pregnant women across the globe. The WHO provides critical financinging to developing countries, trains doctors and distributes medicine and supplies. WHO doctors and field staff work daily to provide the medicine that expectant mothers need to survive.
In keeping with the WHO's policies, the term for the ambassadorship is limited, and LIya has proudly served for five years. Liya was honored to work with the WHO and will continue to support its work.