Veteran British entertainer Cilla Black is embarking on a charity walk in London on Saturday (23Jun12) to raise awareness of widows in underdeveloped countries.
The beloved Alfie singer's husband Bobby Willis died in 1999, and Black is keen to offer support to other grieving women around the world after she watched an emotional documentary about the issue in India.
She tells Britain's Hello! magazine, "Widows (in India) are often thrown out on the streets by their families and excluded from society. Without the protection of a husband, widows face horrific abuse and persecution. They are vulnerable to murder, rape, prostitution, forced marriage, eviction, property theft and physical and mental abuse."
Black wants to do all she can to help and adds, "My experience of widowhood in no way compares to the appalling suffering endured by the 245 million widows in other parts of the world who are suffering physical and psychological hardship.
"This Saturday is international Widows Day, which will be marked by a global day of action. Together with others, including (former British Prime Minister Tony Blair's wife) Cherie Blair, I will take part in a charity walk with a herd of goats across London Bridge. The goats are symbolic - they represent wealth and provide a lifeline for many widows in south Asia and Africa."