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26 March 2021, 14:35
Jade Thirlwall has teamed up with Unicef to learn about the war in Yemen and revealed her Arabic skills as she spoke about her Yemeni heritage.
The 28-year-old ‘Confetti’ songstress has teamed up with Unicef to learn about the war in Yemen and shared a video posted by Unicef’s official Instagram page, where she spoke with 17-year-old Somaya to help raise awareness.
Jade, who is of Yemeni and Egyptian background, discussed her Yemeni heritage with Somaya and went on to open up about her childhood with her late grandfather, who taught her about her culture when she was younger.
She said: “I have really fond memories of my grandfather going to the mosque and cooking me Yemeni food and telling me all these stories about living in Yemen.”
Jade went on to say that her grandfather really “encouraged” her to be in touch with her Yemeni heritage whilst growing up.
The ‘Sweet Melody’ songstress said: “You know, as I’ve got older, I feel like once my grandfather passed away when I was 13 I sort of lost a lot of my Yemeni identity because he was the main person in my life who would really champion my Yemeni heritage and encourage me to acknowledge it all the time.”
Jade then revealed her bi-lingual skills and spoke in Arabic with Somaya, admitting she knows how to greet people as well as how to ask for a cup of tea, before adding that her mum bought her Arabic lessons for her birthday, so she’s sure to get more practice in.
The pair went on to discuss life for young women in Yemen, as well as the ongoing crisis and war they are going through.
A must-watch conversation between @LittleMix star and UNICEF UK supporter, Jade Thirlwall and 17-year-old Somaya from Yemen.— UNICEF UK (@UNICEF_uk) March 25, 2021
Thank you Jade for shining a light on the situation in Yemen and a big thank you to Somaya for sharing her experiences💙https://t.co/iyPHSG1fxv
Thanking Somaya and Unicef for having such an important conversation, Jade went on to say: “It was a pleasure to speak to Somaya and I am grateful to Unicef UK for giving us the opportunity to have such a special conversation.
“It is so important to hear from people who are impacted by the conflict in Yemen and Somaya is the perfect example of a determined, remarkable young woman doing all she can to give a voice to the children who have been impacted.”
“Somaya’s wish for a future where every child can fulfil their dreams and potential was inspirational, and I am honoured to use my platform to amplify her story,” Jade added.