Italian opera singer Andrea Bocelli launched a "Voices of the World" musical education programme jointly with UNESCO on Wednesday (Nov 13) to provide a boost to children affected by armed conflicts.
The multi-year programme will expand on the renowned blind tenor's 2016 "Voices of Haiti" project that provided musical therapy and training, lessons, rehearsals, play time and meals to 12,000 children in one of the world's poorest countries.
"Music is a universal language that can influence the human soul in a positive way," Bocelli, 61, told Reuters in Paris after signing a memorandum of understanding with UNESCO to set up similar music education programmes in countries such as Mali.
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation's new "Voices of the World" programme will kick off in 2020 focusing on regions including Syria, Iraq and the Palestinian territories.
"Through creation of regional choruses and other educational activities, ABF seeks to empower participants and their communities through the tool of music by reinforcing skills, stimulating creativity, fostering collaboration and offering more opportunities to succeed in life," a foundation statement said.