The Ivorian striker is best known around the world for his long and record-breaking career with Chelsea Football Club and for being named African Footballer of the Year in 2006 and 2009. He is the top scorer and former captain of the Ivory. National team of the coast.
He also has a long track record off the pitch, participating in a variety of health promotion, anti-malaria and HIV prevention and control campaigns.
‘Champion on and off the field’
During the announcement of his new position in Geneva, Mr Drogba said he was honored to team up with WHO and “support its work to help people achieve the highest possible standard of health, especially youth in all countries.”
“I have personally benefited from the fact that sport helps to lead a healthy life, and I am determined to work with WHO to share such achievements around the world,” he said.
WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus called Mr. Drogba “a proven champion who changed the rules of the game both on and off the pitch.”
According to Tedros, athlete support can help curb the growing burden of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) by promoting healthy lifestyles.
“We are delighted to have him on our team and helping communities around the world achieve and score goals through sport for their physical and mental health and well-being,” Tedros said.
According to the head of WHO, Mr Drogba will also support the mobilization of the international community to “popularize sport as a primary means of improving the physical, mental health and social well-being of all people, including in the provision of assistance. COVID-19 recovery efforts ”.
Lack of exercise
Current global estimates show that four in five adolescents and one in four adults do not get enough physical activity.
Globally, this will cost $ 54 billion in direct health care costs and an additional $ 14 billion in lost productivity.
Increased physical activity also harms health systems, the environment, economic development, community well-being and quality of life.
Regular physical activity helps lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of hypertension, coronary heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and various cancers, including breast and colon cancer.
World Health Championship
Mr Drogba’s announcement as WHO Goodwill Ambassador was made during the opening ceremony The FIFA World Cup Healthy 2022 is a legacy of sport and health.
The initiative is a partnership between the Qatar Ministry of Health and its Supreme Committee for Delivery and Heritage, WHO and the governing body of world football, FIFA, to promote the sport during the FIFA World Cup in Qatar next year.
Mr Drogba joins other WHO ambassadors, including Brazilian football champion Alisson Becker and his wife, Dr. Natalia Lowe; Michael Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies and mayor of New York for three terms; Cynthia Germanotta, President of the Born This Way Foundation and mother of artist Lady Gaga; and former UK Prime Minister and current UN Special Envoy for Global Education Gordon Brown.