Cindy named UN ambassador

Cindy named UN ambassador

Thai celebrity Cindy Sirinya Bishop campaigning for women's rights as new UN Women Regional Goodwill Ambassador for Asia-Pacific. (Photo: Ploy Phutpheng)
Thai celebrity Cindy Sirinya Bishop campaigning for women's rights as new UN Women Regional Goodwill Ambassador for Asia-Pacific. (Photo: Ploy Phutpheng)

Celebrity activist Cindy Sirinya Bishop has been appointed as UN Women's Regional Goodwill Ambassador for Asia and the Pacific to promote gender equality and women's rights.

During her two-year appointment, which began last month, Ms Bishop will represent UN Women to promote gender equality and the organisation's other goals. She will also help raise funds and build partnerships and furthermore promote public awareness through education, dialogue and cooperation with schools, communities and governments.

"My mother instilled in me very early on a strong sense of justice and fierce belief in the resilience and strength of women, and these values continue to guide me today," she said.

"I am so deeply grateful for the opportunity to work towards achieving greater gender equality in the region, especially in the areas of eliminating gender-based violence and in providing equal opportunity for girls and women to realise their full potential."

Ms Bishop, 41, is one of Thailand's leading campaigners in ending violence against women.

In early 2018, she spoke up on social media against Thai authorities for urging women not to look "sexy" to avoid sexual assault during the Songkran festival that year. That year, #DontTellMeHowtoDress quickly evolved into a movement championing gender equality. Her story was covered by local and international media.

In July 2018, Ms Bishop worked with UN Women to organise the "Social Power Exhibition Against Sexual Assault" exhibition, an initiative supported by United Nations agencies, governments in Asean, the media, civil society and youth groups. She also worked on her #DontTellMeHowToDress campaign with civil society organisations in the Philippines and Singapore.

In November that year, she received the "Activist of the Year Award" from the office of the Prime Minister of Thailand. Ms Bishop is a model and actress known best for hosting Asia's Next Top Model, a reality TV show broadcast in most countries in the region.

The celebrity is also the knowledge director of Dragonfly360, a platform advocating gender equality in Asia. She is currently writing a series of children's books on safety, rights and respectful relationships.

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