UNDP appoints renowned Lebanese artist Melhem Zein as "Live Lebanon Goodwill Ambassador"

January 20, 2023

Beirut, 20 January 2023: The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has appointed renownded Lebanese artist Melhem Zein as UNDP Live Lebanon Goodwill Ambassador to advance and accelerate action on road safety in Lebanon, among other development and humanitarian causes.

Mr. Zein's track record in philanthropic work especially on road safety aligns with UNDP and MTV's long-standing partnership in that area. Through his far-reaching platforms and influence among Arab and Lebanese audiences, he will support UNDP in raising awareness and mobilizing support to help ensure safer roads and realise the Sustainable Development Goals for a future without poverty and hunger.

According to the World Bank, Lebanon is “among the worst globally” in terms of road safety as traffic incidents are the number one cause of unintentional injury and death in the country. In fact, since the beginning of the country’s economic and social crisis in October 2019 till May 2022, it is estimated that Lebanon witnessed an average of 237 car accidents and an average of 32 people killed per month. The appointment of Mr. Zein as UNDP Live Lebanon Goodwill Ambassador complements UNDP and MTV's partnership to tackle development challenges in Lebanon starting with road safety, one of the main reasons of death in Lebanon.

“ We were looking for someone who could help us convey the message on the importance of road safety in Lebanon and who has the  reach to push forward this agenda, among other development causes. Melhem Zein, as our Live Lebanon Goodwill Ambassador, and through his influence among Lebanese audiences will most certainly be contributing to saving lives and will support us in advancinng on the Sustainable Development Goals" Melanie Hauenstein, UNDP Resident Representative.

A survivor of a deadly car accident himself, Melhem has taken it upon himself to improve road safety in Lebanon to prevent such accidents from happening in the future. So far he was able to install reflectors and reflective tape on a substantial number of highways and streets across the country.

" In the absence of government-led initiatives and as a Lebanese citizen, I felt the urge to take action and contribute to my community. The car accident affected me deeply and that is why I’ve taken the initiative of lighting the tunnels and highway around the city. I’m honored to be recognized by UNDP and looking forward to working on more projects together In the near future" Melhem Zein, Lebanese Artist.

UN agencies, is regularily enlisting the voluntary services and support of prominent figures as Goodwill Ambassadors and advocates to shine a spotlight on important issues affecting our planet and its people. These well-known individuals are at the top of their field—whether it's film, television, music, art or sports—with talents and achievements that have made them household names. They all share a commitment to making the planet a better place for all of us. Since its launch in 2009, UNDP Live Lebanon initiative has appointed a selected number of Lebanese individuals as Goodwill Ambassadors, mainly from the diaspora. The Goodwill Ambassadors are selected based on their track record of philanthropic work and commitment to Lebanon's development. They supported Live Lebanon in mobilizing resources to implement more than 70 projects in different regions in Lebanon.

UNDP is working in Lebanon since 1986 as a development partner supporting economic recovery, including working with municipalities to deliver basic services to host communities, promoting clean energy and solid waste management, strengthening governance and rule of law, providing support to elections, and working on empowering women and youth.

For more information, please contact

In UNDP – Lebanon | Rana Moughabghab | rana.moughabghab@undp.org |  +961 3 835 351


UNDP is the leading United Nations organization fighting to end the injustice of poverty, inequality, and climate change. Working with our broad network of experts and partners in 170 countries, we help nations to build integrated, lasting solutions for people and planet.