Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Avon fights to end violence against women

This is a cause very dear to my heart, my beautizens. I have experienced abuse not from just one man but from two men. One from an ex-boyfriend and another from a family member. I used to think that hurting women was just a guy thing. I'm so glad my friends, our pastor's wife and my husband have proven to me that any kind of abuse is never okay, hurting those who are weaker is not a "guy thing", and real men treat their women right.

Repeat after me: 
1. Any kind of abuse is never okay.
2. Hurting those who are weaker is not a "guy thing."
3. Real men treat their women (and children!) right.

So I was obviously very happy when Avon celebrated their 125th anniversary with this special announcement: Avon created a $1 million Avon Global Believe Fund that will support women’s domestic violence shelters and agencies all over the world! Part of the work includes providing critical life-saving services for victims of domestic violence and their families. Avon will also fund awareness campaigns so that women everywhere are empowered, and everyone—men, women and children—will know that any kind of abuse against women and children is not normal. 

 Academy Award winner and Avon Global Ambassador Reese Witherspoon was at the kick-off event at Atlanta, Georgia, one of the 16 cities that are part of the Avon Believe World Tour. Reese said, “I am so proud to be working with Avon—a company that is on the forefront of women’s issues around the world. Approximately one in three women globally is likely to experience some type of violence in her lifetime.” 

Reese is sadly correct. In the Philippines alone, there were 10,482 reported cases of domestic abuse in 2009. That’s reported. There is no way of knowing how many women silently suffer abuse in their homes, thinking that abuse is part of being a woman. For example, I never told anyone about the violence I suffered until I was waaaay older and I had claimed back my self-esteem and confidence. I agree with Reese when she said, “I believe we all have an obligation to address this vitally important issue, one of the most prevalent yet under-funded problems in the world.”

 Avon Chairman and CEO Andrea Jung explained why the “company for women”—that’s Avon’s proud motto—is pushing to end violence against women and children: “Avon was founded in 1886, 34 years before women in the United States won the right to vote, on the then-revolutionary concept that women could earn an independent income, and achieve financial freedom and personal empowerment. Decade in and decade out, the ‘Avon lady’ has been at the forefront of the changing role of women.” 

“As the company for women, Avon feels an obligation and responsibility to play a leadership role in helping to improve the lives of women around the world, and we truly believe we can make a difference,” Andrea said. With over six million Avon Representatives in over 100 countries, Avon has made it possible for women to find self-worth, provide for their families and earn independence.

Andrea and Reese present Cathy Willis Spraetz, 
CEO of Partnership Against Domestic Violence, with a $60,00 check 
as part of the Avon Global Believe Fund.
Reese isn’t the only celebrity supporting Avon’s cause. During the Avon Believe World Tour (Manila is one of the stops!), Fergie of The Black Eyed Peas, Patrick Dempsey and Zoe Saldana are among the special guests expected to rally this cause. 

Like these celebrities, you too can help end domestic violence. To know more about this beautiful cause and how you can support it, please go to Avon's website. Buy Avon products, too!


Shen said...

I wish emotional abuse would have more focus. I think that's the worst kind of beating than the physical ones. bruises and broken bones will heal but self-esteem isn't. some men now are wise and they manipulate women through emotional abuse, often using their children. :( some women kasi don't think hurtful words are abuse eh.. this is also very close to my heart although i try to steer away as it brings bad memories..

Beauty For A Living said...

You're right, Shen. Emotional and psychological abuse are worse because everyone thinks everything's okay so no one will help you.

I wish all kinds of abuse will end!