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Iran: Actress, singer and taekwondo player become envoys against poverty

Source: Mehr News Agency, Tehran; photos by Abolfazl Salmanzadeh

Actress Merila Zarei

Iranian actress Merila Zarei and pop singer Reza Sadeqi along with taekwondo legend Hadi Saei were selected as the new ambassadors of the Mehrafarin Charity Society during a ceremony held on May 27 at Tehran's Milad Tower.

Taekwondo legend Hadi Saei

Actress Fatemeh Motamed-Arya was the former ambassador of the society in 2007.

The ceremony was held in the presence of stars, sportsmen, and a great number of fans. Host Farzad Hassani first paid tribute to Motamed-Arya for her humanitarian activities over the past few years.

Pop singer Reza Sadeqi

Director of Mehrafarin Charity Society, Fatemeh Daneshvar spoke first and said, "Selecting a new ambassador for the society is itself a difficult task, and we are happy to see popular figures appointed to take charge of the hard work that lies ahead."

Afterwards, Hadi Saei was presented with the Mehrafarin medal by a group of sportsmen that included football veteran Mehdi Mahdavikia.

Hadi Saei with football veteran Mehdi Mahdavikia

"I really don't think I deserve this much love and attention here tonight. I have received numerous international medals, but this one holds special value for me," said two-time Olympic gold medalist Hadi Saei.

Next, cinematic figures including deputy director of Iran's House of Cinema Farhad Tohidi, actor Ali Dehkordi and actress Mahchehreh Khalili were called to the stage to present actress Zarei with the Mehrafarin medal.

After receiving her medal, Merila Zarei turned to the audience and said, "I feel genuinely closer to all of you here tonight. Know that I did not enter the world of cinema for personal fame. I am delighted that I am able to help those with problems in their everyday lives; the flower girls or the fathers who struggle to make ends meet. I would hope that God has bestowed this honor upon me for doing my job well."

Pop singer Sadeqi received his medal from filmmaker Hassan Fat'hi and singers Reza Yazdani and Homayun Faal. He hoped that someday, all children would get the opportunity to learn to read and write.

Next, Managing Director of Iran's Music House Mohammad Sarir handed a plaque of honor to Sadeqi.

Sadeqi took off his hat, put it on the stage, then asked the participants to put money in it as a symbolic gesture to collect money for needy children and their families. Zarei was first to donate and other participants followed suit.

The ceremony continued with a live performance by the Meshki Pushan (Men in Black) band led by Sadeqi.

... Payvand News - 05/28/10 ... --

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