David Beckham turns the Empire State Building blue for Unicef

Former footballer David Beckham lit up New York’s Empire State Building in blue to mark 70 years of charity Unicef helping children.

The father of four is a goodwill ambassador for the organisation and joined a children’s takeover event on Monday at the United Nations’ headquarters in New York, where young celebrities and supporters gathered to celebrate the anniversary.

Becks was interviewed by Millie Bobby Brown, the 12-year-old star of television series Stranger Things, who talked to him about his 11 years as a Unicef ambassador and he later switched the Empire State Building’s lights to the charity’s shade of blue in recognition of their 70 years of work.

Also at the event was Pirates of the Caribbean star Orlando Bloom, who led an on-stage discussion with child refugee Mustafa Al Said, who fled conflict in his native Syria, and other guests included Jackie Chan and former child soldier Ishmael Beah who now works against the recruitment of children into armed groups.

Actress Priyanka Chopra was announced as Unicef’s newest goodwill ambassador at the event.

She said: “Along this decade-old journey with Unicef, I have been on many field trips to villages and centres across India.

“On those trips, I spent time with numerous young girls and their families and experienced first hand the transformative power of empowering young girls with opportunities that are rightfully theirs.

“Together with my fellow, dedicated ambassadors, I am now proud to stand with Unicef to help build a world where children’s rights are respected and protected.”

Guests at the event also heard from a lawyer campaigning for disabled children after he lost his limbs from stepping on a landmine as a child, and a mother living with HIV whose son is HIV negative thanks to Unicef’s work in Namibia to prevent transmission from mothers to babies.

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