Latin American musicians Danny Ocean, Gian Marco join forces in World Refugee Day concert
Washington, DC — Venezuelan superstar Danny Ocean and Peruvian sensation Gian Marco join forces for World Refugee Day this year in a live concert to spotlight the courage of the men, women and children forced to flee violence and persecution around the world in these starkly troubled times.
Performing from their own homes, Danny Ocean and Gian Marco will be streamed live globally across multiple online platforms to support refugees around the world, including during the COVID-19 health crisis. Alfonso Herrera, one of the most recognized actors in Latin America and UNHCR’s High Profile Supporter, will host the concert.
The World Refugee Day Couch Concert is a special collaboration between UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC, and will premiere on Friday, June 19, from 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm ET in the United States (20:00 GMT to 21:00 GMT).
Danny Ocean, a UNHCR High Profile Supporter, has advocated for greater support for Venezuelan refugees who have fled political and socio-economic turmoil, and for people escaping brutal gang violence in Central America who he had a chance to meet on a recent trip with UNHCR to the region.
“I’ve experienced how difficult it is to leave behind everything you know to build a life again somewhere new,” said Danny Ocean, who rose to global fame with his hit Me Rehuso, in which he sings about the love he left behind after leaving his native Venezuela to start a new life in the United States. “With the threat of COVID-19, refugee families now face not only the uncertainty of living in exile but are experiencing even more fear and hardship. They need our support.”
Gian Marco, a three-time Latin Grammy winner and UNICEF Peru Goodwill Ambassador, has advocated for the well-being of children impacted by humanitarian crises for over a decade in his native country.
Gian Marco said: “Peru hosts many Venezuelan families who face hardship. I am taking part in this virtual World Refugee Day concert to express my solidarity with these people and with refugees around the world.”
On a visit with UNHCR to the region in March, Alfonso Herrera met with children, teenagers, women and members of the LGBTI community who have been affected by gang crime and violence in El Salvador and Honduras.
Displacement in Latin America has grown exponentially in recent years. More than 5 million Venezuelan refugees and migrants are currently living outside their country, having fled violence, insecurity and threats back home as well as shortages of food, medicine and essential services, resulting in one of the largest exodus in the world.
The number of people fleeing cycles of extortion, death threats, murder and sexual violence in the north of Central America has also soared in recent years due to worsening and deadly crime and violence, fueled by drug cartels and gangs. Globally, the number of people forced to flee their homes has continued to rise.
About World Refugee Day
Held every year on June 20, World Refugee Day commemorates the strength, courage and perseverance of millions of refugees. First marked in 2001, World Refugee Day aims to bring the public closer to the refugee story, showing them as ordinary people living in extraordinary circumstances. From Africa to the Americas, UNHCR and the global community come together to honor the courage and determination of children, women and men driven from their homes.
UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, leads international action to protect people forced to flee their homes because of conflict and persecution. We deliver life-saving assistance like shelter, food and water, help safeguard fundamental human rights, and develop solutions that ensure people have a safe place to call home where they can build a better future. We also work to ensure that stateless people are granted a nationality.
UNHCR is taking measures to help respond to the COVID-19 public health emergency and prevent further spread. Working together with governments, UNHCR ensures refugees are included in national health response plans and are well-informed on how to prevent the spread of COVID-19, have access to soap and clean water, and continue to receive the life-saving aid and assistance they need.
For interviews with Danny Ocean and Gian Marco, please contact:
Larissa Carpinteyro, [email protected]
UNHCR media contacts:
In London, Colin Kampschoer, [email protected]
Kennedy Center media contact:
Brendan Padgett, [email protected]