Sochi 2014 ambassador Vodianova carries Paralympic Torch
Wednesday, 29 August 2012
August 29 - Natalia Vodianova, a top Russian model and Sochi 2014 ambassador, has taken part in the Torch Relay of the London 2012 Paralympic Games.
Vodianova (pictured top) ran with the Torch along Evelyn Street by central London's Surrey Docks, cheered on by volunteers from Sochi 2014.
The Russian, according to Forbes the third best paid model in the world this year, lives permanently in the United Kingdom.
Her involvement in the Torch Relay means she will have played a part in three successive Olympic and Paralympic Games after appearing in the Closing Ceremony at Vancouver 2010.
"It is a great honour for me to carry the Paralympic Torch, the flame of which represents the achievements of the entire Paralympic Movement throughout the world," she said.
"In London right now, the Paralympic athletes are rightly in the spotlight – they are setting new standards in terms of strength and determination, and will inspire the world.
"As here in London, I'm convinced that the Paralympic Winter Games in 2014 will put into practice the principles of inclusion and integration and that the barrier-free environment established in Sochi during the Games will become a catalyst for profound social change throughout all of Russia."
A keen marathon runner, the model has strong personal reasons for being involved in the Paralympics.
Vodianova is also a philanthropist who has been an ambassador for Hear the World, which raises awareness about hearing loss, and the 30-year-old's half-sister suffers from cerebral palsy.
Writing on her Facebook page the Russian said that the Paralympians were her "new role models of strength, determination and Olympic spirit".
December 2009: Russian supermodel to be ambassador for Sochi 2014