Madrid 10 September 2010 - Icelandic Graphic Artist Stefán Einarsson, today received first prize in the “Unleash Your Creativity” - UN Print Ad Competition against Poverty in an award ceremony presided by Her Majesty Sofia the Queen of Spain in Madrid.
Mr. Einarsson´s entry “Dear leaders, we are still waiting”, a call to World leaders to achieve the Millennium Development Goals was voted number one by an international jury of designers and communications experts. “I sincerely hope this ad will serve its purpose of raising awareness of the MDGs and act as a powerful reminder to the world leaders to honour their promises to half extreme poverty before 2015,” Mr. Einarsson said in his acceptance speech after receiving the first prize. The prize was donated by the 2010 Spanish presidency of the European Union.
At the same ceremony presided by Her Majesty Queen Sofia of Spain, Spanish actor Antonio Banderas was highly commended for his role as UNDP Goodwill Ambassador for the MDGs. In his address Mr. Banderas said that the success of the fight against poverty depended in large degree on public awareness. “I think that is the reason I am here, to try and spread the message as clearly as possible to the largest number of people…to the United Nations I say: “You can count on me!.”
Rebeca Grynspan, the Associate Administrator of UNDP – the leading UN agency on the MDGs- stated in her opening remarks at the ceremony that the award was another proof of the potential that art and creative activities have to spread messages and mobilize political will, as well as to communicate our values and goals for development and the achievement of the MDGs.
The Spanish Presidency prize, 5.000 Euros was handed over to the Print Ad Competion winner by the President of the jury, Mr. Jacques Séguéla, Vice-President of Havas, the International Communication Group.
“Advertising is never as beautiful as when it is used to fight the unhappiness of the world,” Mr. Séguéla said, presenting the winning ad in a ceremony attended by among others Spanish Secretary of State for International Cooperationo and Development, Ms. Soraya Rodríguez Ramos and UNRIC Director Ms. Afsané Bassir- Pour.
“It is obvious that aid alone and governments alone can not attain the MDGs, “ Ms. Bassir- Pour said: “To spread the message we partnered with the European creative community, the advertising sector and the press- a winning combination'.
Ms. Rodríguez Ramos said that the help of creative was very important in the international community´s endeavors to fight against poverty: “Society needs creative people to build an image and, in this case, to contribute to increase the awareness about the need to achieve the MDGs."
Her Majesty Queen Sofia of Spain, flanked by the winner Stefán Einarsson,on her right and UNRIC´s Director Ms. Afsané Bassir-Pour on her right. Rebeca Grynspan, assistant administrator of UNDP is second from left. Second from right is actor Antonio Banderas. On his left State Secretary Ms. Soraya Rodríguez Ramos, President of the jury Jacques Séguéla.
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