“Person of the Year”, “Woman of the Third Millennium”, the Goodwill Ambassador. This is Kamalia. She is known in Ukraine and abroad as a talented performer. The singer has multimillions of fans in the world. The views of her video clips show that.
You started working for charitable causes at the beginning of your career. How was it?
— I do not like talking about charity. Silence suits such matters. But I am telling about my work in the media to be an example. Because helping is simple. Everyone can do it. My first charity tour was in 1996. Since then, I have participated in many charity events to support deprived children, to fight against drug addiction and child criminality. Supported athletes.
I received medals, watches and honourary letters for charity. However, rewards do not matter to me. The main thing it is what you do.
How did you become the Goodwill Ambassador?
— Goodwill Ambassador is a special mission. It has changed my attitude to life. In 2005, there was an earthquake in northern Pakistan. This was the biggest catastrophe in the history of the country. I could not remain indifferent to human grief. My beloved husband, Mohammad Zahoor was born in this country in the city of Karachi. We began to help the victims. I had to overcome my fear and go to the mountains where the villages and cities were completely destroyed. People were waiting for help there. We were distributing food, clothes and medicine. Including hard-to-reach impossible areas.
We also helped create an infrastructure for studying the problems of vascular heart disease of children in the army hospital of the city of Rawalpindi. In the concert tour, I helped raise money for the building of university for poor children of northern regions of Pakistan.
In one year I received an invitation from the Pakistani government to become the Goodwill Ambassador. My work at the Mission was noted. This way I popularized Ukraine in the international arena. When I travelled around the world, the greatest of my goals was to tell as much as possible about Ukraine, about our values. In order everyone knows who we are.
What visits would you like to mark as the Ambassador?
— As the Goodwill Ambassador I travelled to the demilitarized zone between South and North Korea with a peaceful mission. I visited Vietnam.
What impresses you most in this work?
— Children. Serhii was a very young boy when he called me after a television broadcast. He is suffering from hemophilia. He stopped walking after the operation. When we met, Serhii was unable to raise his head from the pillow. 15 or 16 years have passed since that call. Attempts to put him on his legs were unsuccessful. The boy was operated several times in Cuba. His life is impossible without certain medicines. During the years of our communication, he became strong, graduated from the university. He studied at the Faculty of Journalism. But, unfortunately, he remains in a wheelchair. I continue to support him.
You have millions of views on YouTube. Does it make you proud? Or is it something different?
I feel the pride when they write: “Ukrainian singer takes the first place in Polish, Dutch, Austrian, Irish chart, or in Top 10 in German, English, Spanish or Italian charts.”
Each previous achievement loses its relevance next day. That is why I set myself new goals and go to them with perseverance every day.
For all my merits, I am very grateful to my professional mentor and producer, my mother. She paid enough attention to my talents since my childhood and developed my leadership qualities. Everything I achieve, it is due to her.
What do you consider your greatest victory?
— I have enough victories. I have achieved everything by my tenacity. I had to work a lot, to sleep a little, and sometimes not to eat enough. Each my song is like a soul was born again: pure, without falsity. We have to work on ourselves every day. I do not consider myself to be better than other Ukrainian stars are. I am the same as everybody. I also sing for the viewer. The only thing is my viewers are the European audience. I have to fight with the world stars to win a place in their charts and thus glorify our Ukraine.
You are now actively engaged in charity.
— Every person lives in two stages — while taking and giving back. I passed the first stage very quickly. It is clear: there is more happiness when you give! My beloved husband taught me that! He gives a lot and is happy about that. I started taking an example from him. And the title of “Mrs. World” simply gave it a boost. Be happy!
Kamalia — Ukrainian singer and actress.
Born in Transbaikalia in Russia. The real name is Natalia Shmarenkova.
At the age of three, the family moved to Budapest. Later — first to Lviv, and then to Kyiv, currently the family has been living in Kyiv for 25 years. Graduated from the secondary school on a class of violin, as well as the studio of opera singing, a circus college and the National University of Culture. Had the lead at various musical festivals. In 1993 became the winner of «Chervona Ruta», won the competition «TV-Chance — Stars» in Moscow. Then began to receive invitations to the concerts. The next victory was in the competition «Lots of Friends» — Yalta-96. In 1997, released the first album «In Techno Style». In 2008, won the International contest “Missis of the World”. Founded the Сharitable International Children’s Fund «Kamalia». Helps sick and deprived children, supports talented people. Brings up two daughters together with her husband Mohammad Zahoor who is currently singer’s producer. They dream about a son.