Carey Mulligan warns of ‘dire situation’ for children in war zones amid Covid-19

Alex Green, PA Entertainment Reporter

Carey Mulligan and Marcus Mumford have warned that children living in war zones face a “dire situation” amid the coronavirus pandemic as they launched an appeal for War Child.

The couple, who have been married since 2012 and share two children, are global ambassadors for the charity, which provides care to young people suffering war or the aftermath of conflict.

Speaking during an online Q&A with chief executive of War Child UK Rob Williams, Mulligan explained how lockdown had caused her to reflect on her charity work.

She said: “Like most people I have spoken to throughout this, people have been reflecting on what their experiences have been like, and we have been super lucky to have a good family time in this.

“And then it immediately makes you think how people are experiencing this in other parts of the world.

“We have both recently been on trips to Iraq.

“In a way, you cast your mind back to when you were in a camp and think that if you take away education, if you take community from these children, if you take away their ability to share with other kids and play, it is a dire, dire situation.

“It did feel there was an urgency to ensure that nothing else is taken away from them and, in fact, more can be given to them.

Marcus Mumford (Ian West/PA)

“Whatever is possible within the ways these countries are running at the moment, but they should have as much support as they can, given that their situation right now is so difficult and must be so hard.

“That definitely feels like an emergency and that’s why this really is an emergency crowdfunder because we need to make sure all the services War Child are providing right now continue.”

She added: “We have been really lucky that this has been an amazing family time for us.

“But again that has really made me think about the work War Child do and how families can be tested and really challenged by this.

“It made me feel tested as a large family here.

“How much more testing would that be for a family in a conflict zone or a situation where you don’t have your parents?”

Carey Mulligan (Ian West/PA)

War Child is aiming to raise £300,000 during its six-week Emergency Coronavirus Crowdfunder.

Actresses Vanessa Kirby and Emma Stone, actors Jude Law and Jamie Dornan, and Louis Tomlinson, Coldplay and The 1975 have contributed items and experiences.

Mumford, frontman of folk group Mumford & Sons, has gifted a guitar and a private performance over video call to the auction.

Oscar-nominated actress Mulligan has offered breakfast and a screening of her new film Promising Young Woman.

Recalling how the fundraiser began, Mumford said: “We talked quite a lot this year about what fundraising might look like.

“We talked right at the beginning of lockdown about looking ahead towards how this might affect War Child’s fundraising efforts this year, and how it might affect the kinds of children we have had the privilege to meet in conflict zones around the world.

“We talked about how it might hit some of the most vulnerable people really hard.”

Many of the charity concerts and dinners that usually fund War Child have been cancelled due to coronavirus.

– The items will be on sale online between now and September 1.