Feed the World: Birhan Woldu and Live Aid
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- 5th November 2011
- 224 pages -
Birhan Woldu became one of the most recognized faces and forms of the late 20th century when her skeletal image was used at the end of 'Live Aid' to globally publicize famine in Africa. Although 'Live Aid', led by musicians such as Sir Bob Geldof and Bono, raised millions for famine relief, most people thought Birhan was dead until she was 'rediscovered' by a Canadian film crew who helped fund her schooling and helped change her life. Twenty years later Birhan once again became a symbol of hope for Africa when she appeared on stage at Live 8, beaming as Madonna hugged her in front of millions (see cover image). But what is the true story? Is Birhan just another example of media and celebrity exploitation of the next best cause? Has she helped change the way Western society views Africa? And what happened to Birhan in the years when everyone thought she was dead? Harvey, who travelled with Birhan from Africa to London for Live 8 and has had unlimited access to her story since then, tells Birhan's life story from the days when her father literally carried his daughter across Africa on an epic journey to life, to Live Aid and the years of struggle between to the present day.Today Birhan works as the face of Africa, still helping others in her day job as a nurse, while campaigning to raise funds to help alleviate poverty and famine in Africa.
Oliver Harvey is chief features writer at the British newspaper The Sun. In his work he has covered Afghanistan and reconstruction and famine in Africa and Live 8. He first met Birhan Woldu while travelling with Tony Blair to Ethiopia just before Live 8. All proceeds will go to AFRICAN CHILDREN'S EDUCATION TRUST (A-CET)