UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador Marianna Vardinogiannis passes away

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Prominent Greek philanthropist and UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador, Marianna Vardinogiannis, has died aged 80, Ekathimerini reported.

Vardinogiannis, who is also the wife of shipping magnate Vardis Vardinogiannis, dedicated herself to the protection of human rights in education, health, climate change and culture. She was active in providing for children and vulnerable groups in Greece and abroad.

As an UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador, Vardinogiannis served in various institutions, foundations and organisations in Greece and globally. Some of the organisations include, the Library of Alexandria’s Board of Directors, the International Women’s Movement for Peace, the International Center for Mentor Foundation against Drugs, and the Foundation “Light of Africa.”

Marianna Vardinoyannis at the Acropolis Museum. Photo: Marianna V. Vardinoyannis.

Among many initiatives aimed at helping sick children and their families, Vardinogiannis also sought to fight against childhood cancer for more than 25 years, and was the creator of the ELPIDA Home.

As President of ELPIDA Association of Friends of Children with cancer, Vardinogiannis founded the first Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Unit in Greece, which would save 860 children from Greece and neighbouring countries.

In 2020, Vardinogiannis received the prestigious Nelson Mandela Prize, gaining her further recognition for her humanitarian work worldwide.

Source: Ekathimerini

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