The UN recently presented popstar Shakira with a medal in honor of all of her philanthropic work over the years helping children in need as part of their World Day of Social Justice celebration. As usual, Shakira used her moment in the spotlight to help those less fortunate, calling on everyone to do their part. "It's not too late to keep our promise to our children, but we must act now. Together, we can make education and decent work for all a reality," she said while accepting the award in Geneva, Switzerland.
Shakira uses her influence to help out in a variety of ways. Her own Pies Descalzos or Barefoot Foundation has built schools in some of the poorest sectors of Colombia and now provides education and adequate nutrition for over 6,000 children. She is also a founding member of the ALAS Foundation, which promotes positive public policies for children in Latin America and the Caribbean, and is a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador.
So what inspired the Colombian singer to dedicate so much time and effort to making the world better place for youth? Seeing children around her growing up so poor that they couldn't afford shoes had a serious impact on her. Shakira says the experience "shaped my dream and my vision of social justice: to see a world where every child can live a dignified life with the opportunity to reap the benefits of a good education and a chance to pursue their dreams."