WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 16, 2013, 7:30PM
Tony Blair served as Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from May 1997 to June 2007. He was also the leader of Britain’s Labour Party (1994 to 2007) and the Member of Parliament for Sedgefield, England (1983 to 2007).
Tony Blair continues to be active in public life. He has many interests, not least his current role in the Middle East, which takes up the largest proportion of his time. Since leaving Downing Street, Tony Blair has served as the Quartet Representative to the Middle East. He represents the United States of America, United Nations, Russia and the European Union, working with the Palestinians to prepare for statehood as part of the international community’s effort to secure peace.
He has launched the Tony Blair Faith Foundation to promote respect and understanding of and between the major religions and to make the case for faith as a force for good in the modern world. The foundation creates opportunities for people of all faiths and none to come together to learn directly from each other and to take joint action on shared humanitarian goals.
The ‘Faiths Act’ programme empowers, supports and trains young people to take multi-faith action against extreme poverty in support of the Millennium Development Goals, providing an alternative to those who try to use faith as a means to divide. ‘Face to Faith’ is a global education project for students aged 11-16. Students learn directly from each other through working on joint projects, video-conference exchanges and an online community. The ‘Faith and Globalisation Initiative’ is a global network of leading universities, examining the role of faith in the modern world.
The Tony Blair Africa Governance Initiative helps some of Africa’s most dynamic leaders deliver the change their people need to relieve poverty. Renewing Tony Blair’s commitment to Africa, the Africa Governance Initiative currently operates in Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Guinea, Malawi and South Sudan advising each of the country’s Presidents with a team of AGI’s staff working full-time at the centre of all six governments. By combining Tony Blair’s unique experience as a leader and reformer, his personal relationships with African leaders, and in-country teams of experts, the Africa Governance Initiative is helping to build the capacity of partners to tackle poverty and attract investment sustainably.
Having been the first major head of government to bring climate change to the top of the international political agenda at the Gleneagles G8 summit in 2005, Mr. Blair is now leading the Breaking the Climate Deadlock Initiative, through which he is working with world leaders to bring consensus on a new and comprehensive international climate policy framework.
In recognition of his debt to the North East, he has also launched the Tony Blair Sports Foundation, which will increase participation in sport by young people, particularly those who are currently socially excluded – by inspiring more adults to become trained coaches; by providing access to high quality nationally-accredited training for those we recruit; and by helping to match coaches with the schools and sports clubs which need them. The foundation is working to ensuring a sporting legacy in the North East for the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympic Games which Mr Blair helped to bring to the United Kingdom.
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