Olivia Colman

Unicef UK President

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Olivia Colman first became involved with Unicef UK in 2015 when she joined our New Year’s Eve campaign for children affected by the conflict in Syria.

Olivia has supported a number of televised campaigns for Yemen and Syria as well as  our Radio 4 appeal to raise funds for Unicef UK’s Children Emergency Fund. Olivia’s appeal focused on Central African Republic where internal conflict has put children in danger. UNICEF is working to protect children from violence and exploitation, allowing them to continue to attend school and providing medical and nutritional support where it’s needed.

In our We Are Family film Olivia, alongside other supporters and Ambassadors, reflected on her role as a sister with personal thoughts on what makes family relationships so special.

In January 2018, Olivia supported our campaign to reunite refugee families, putting pressure on the UK Government to change the rules that allow refugee children to reunite with their close family already living in the UK.

As well as her continued support for Unicef’s work in Syria, Olivia has also been involved with programmes in the UK. In October 2017 Olivia visited a Unicef UK Rights Respecting School to learn how Unicef is working with schools in the UK to help children to thrive and become responsible, active citizens. Rights Respecting Schools put in place a set of standards based on equality, dignity, respect, non-discrimination and participation to let children’s natural curiosity for the world and empathy for others flourish.

In 2016 she also fronted an appeal film for Soccer Aid and appeals for East Africa and the Refugee and Migrant Crisis.

Olivia continues to support our campaigning and fundraising work for children in danger around the world. In December 2018 it was announced that Olivia had lent her voice to Matt Haig’s ‘The Truth Pixie’, in a special edition audiobook of his top 5 children’s bestseller. As per the direct request of Olivia and Matt, 50p from the sale of each audiobook is going to Unicef UK.

In September 2020, Olivia became the President of Unicef UK.

LONDON, UK - 12 OCT 2017: British actress and Unicef Ambassador Olivia Colman tours Wyvil Primary School with students in Vauxhall, South London during a visit to learn about Unicef UK’s Rights Respecting School Award (RRSA) programme.

Pupils show Olivia around their Unicef Rights Respecting School and explain to her how they integrate rights in the classroom and playground.

Matt Haig's The Truth Pixie, narrated by Olivia
Unicef/Canongate Books