• Text size Normal size text | Increase text size by 10% | Increase text size by 20% | Increase text size by 30%

Barbara Hendricks highlights refugee issues at Hague concert

News Stories, 26 May 2008

© UNHCR/G.Van Moortel
UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador Barbara Hendricks sings for refugees at The Hague Jazz.

THE HAGUE, Netherlands, May 26 (UNHCR) UNHCR Honorary Lifetime Goodwill Ambassador Barbara Hendricks put the spotlight on refugee issues when she gave a concert at an annual jazz festival in The Hague.

Playing last Friday to an enthusiastic audience of 3,000 people, the acclaimed Swedish-American soprano said she was performing "on behalf of the refugees." Hendricks also thanked the Dutch people and the organizers of the two-day festival for their solidarity.

The Hague Jazz and UNHCR have joined forces to promote understanding and support in the Netherlands for refugees worldwide. The Hague Jazz has promised to make a donation to the refugee agency from this year's event, which attracted 24,000 people.

Hendricks dedicated "Strange Fruit," a song about racism in the United States that was immortalized by the late great jazz singer Billy Holiday, to refugees. "I sing this song for them," she told the crowd.

The Netherlands is not only one of UNHCR's most important donors both from the government and private sectors but it is also one of less than 20 countries in the world that accepts refugees for resettlement. The Netherlands also plays a key role in the development of the asylum and migration policy of the European Union.

Hendricks has been a UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador since 1987 and has travelled the globe and spoken to world leaders to raise awareness about refugee issues.

By Gilles van Moortel in The Hague, Netherlands




UNHCR country pages

Muazzez Ersoy Biography

A Turkish singing delight.

George Dalaras Biography

A star among the pantheon of stars.

George Dalaras and UNHCR

Read about Dalaras's long link with UNHCR.

Muazzez Ersoy and UNHCR

Learn about Muazzez Ersoy's links with UNHCR.

Barbara Hendricks and UNHCR

Hendricks' activities for refugees since 1986.

Barbara Hendricks Biography

Read about Hendricks' life and career.

UNHCR Goodwill Ambassadors

Learn about our loyal ambassadors.

Barbara Hendricks marks 25 years with UNHCR

Acclaimed soprano Barbara Hendricks has spent a quarter-of-a-century helping UNHCR to spread awareness about refugees and lobbying on their behalf with politicians and governments. She was named a UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador in 1987 and, in 2002, was appointed Honorary Lifetime Goodwill Ambassador in recognition of her long service for the refugee agency.

In 2012, UNHCR celebrates this landmark 25th anniversary with a ceremony in the Geneva headquarters of the refugee agency. In her years with UNHCR, Hendricks has performed fund-raising concerts, met policymakers and government leaders in Europe, Asia and Africa and been on more than a dozen visits to the field, meeting the forcibly displaced around the world. UNHCR salutes its longest serving Goodwill Ambassador.

Barbara Hendricks marks 25 years with UNHCR

Barbara Hendricks

Barbara Hendricks

Barbara Hendricks visits Malian refugees in Burkina Faso

UNHCR Honorary Lifetime Goodwill Ambassador Barbara Hendricks met with Malian refugees in Damba Camp on July 6, 2012, in northern Burkina Faso. The acclaimed soprano is using the visit to highlight the plight of tens of thousands of refugees who have fled from conflict in their country this year and are living in camps or settlements in neighbouring countries. As of early July, more than 198,000 Malians had fled to Mauritania (88,825), Burkina Faso (65,009) and Niger (44,987). At least 160,000 were estimated to be displaced within Mali, most in the north.

Barbara Hendricks visits Malian refugees in Burkina Faso

Khaled Hosseini gets to know Muzoon, the Play video

Khaled Hosseini gets to know Muzoon, the "Malala of Syrian refugees"

Muzoon is a student, a writer and a fierce advocate for education. She is also a refugee. UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador spent time with her at Azraq camp in Jordan.
Jordan: Khaled Hosseini VisitPlay video

Jordan: Khaled Hosseini Visit

Bestselling author and UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador Khaled Hosseini visited Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan this week to meet with Syrian refugees fleeing the conflict. As the conflict enters its fifth year, the situation is getting more desperate for Syrians, some of whom will risk everything and cross dangerous waters to find safety in Europe.
Iraq: Khaled Hosseini VisitPlay video

Iraq: Khaled Hosseini Visit

UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador Khaled Hosseini, a former refugee from Afghanistan, met Syrian refugees during a trip to northern Iraq. The best-selling novelist talked to many of the refugees, including an aspiring young writer.