As the global elite descend on Davos, Switzerland for the annual World Economic Forum, Verdict is keeping an eye on which celebrities are making an appearance.
The WEF has become something of a favourite among the rich and famous looking to promote their philanthropic efforts. Serial do-gooders actor Leonardo DiCaprio, musician Will.I.Am and U2 frontman Bono were all spotted at Davos last year and could be making an appearance in 2017.
Timeline for Davos
- January 19, 2017
Who’s there this year?
Singer Shakira, rocked up, urging world and business leaders at the opening ceremony of the World Economic Forum on Monday to support efforts to feed, educate and care for underprivileged children.
“Today’s babies will drive tomorrow’s business. Their capacity to contribute will shape tomorrow’s societies, will solve tomorrow’s problems,” the Colombian recording star, who is also a Unicef Goodwill Ambassador, said in an impassioned speech.
Shakira was given a Crystal Award in Davos for her humanitarian work and is the founder of the Pies Descalzos Foundation
Star of the Jason Bourne action movie franchise Matt Damon was there to discuss universal fresh water and sanitation access.
His water charity, Water.org, recently signed a new multi-million-dollar deal with Belgian brewer Stella Artois.
“The poorest of the poor pay more than the middle class in many countries as they were shut out of the infrastructure,” Damon told Reuters at a panel discussion hosted by the Anheuser-Busch InBev beer brand at the World Economic Forum.
Water.org is trying to raise a $55m fund that would provide microloans to finance projects that build access to clean water in developing countries.
Hollywood star and Unesco Special Envoy for Peace Forest Whitaker was honoured for his peace building efforts through his nonprofit Whitaker Peace and Development Initiative.
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In a speech he addressed the importance of finding “common ground” with President-elect Donald Trump, and race relations in the US.
He said he has never been more anxious about the state of the world but sees hope as interconnectivity means people have to care about their neighbors’ tragedies.
Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver was in Davos as part of the next stage of his plan to fight obesity and diabetes.
The Food Revolution star, who has previously spoken out against sugary drinks, said:
“I just think that we always look at oil and banking and selling of arms as these big industries, but the biggest industry on the planet is food.”