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Mary Kay Inc. and the Mary Kay Ash Foundation Further Commit to the Prevention and Elimination of Global Gender-Based Violence

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In recognition of the upcoming International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women kicking off the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, Mary Kay Inc. and the Mary Kay Ash Foundation today announced a renewed, joint commitment to the prevention and elimination of gender-based violence by joining the Generation Equality Action Coalition on Gender-Based Violence. The commitment—which the organizations made public during UN Women’s recent Generation Equality Forum in Paris—is just the latest step the storied beauty brand and its charitable arm have made in the interest of improving the lives of women everywhere.

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Vesna Jaric, Officer-In- Charge, UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women (Photo: Mary Kay Inc.)

The Action Coalition on Gender-Based Violence, co-led by UN Women and by the UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women (UN Trust Fund), among other leaders, is a powerful global movement mobilizing governments, international organizations, philanthropies, and the private sector to deliver transformational progress towards the elimination of gender-based violence through four concrete actions:

  • Creating enabling policy, legal and resource environments;
  • Scaling up evidence driven prevention programming;
  • Scaling up comprehensive, accessible, and quality services for survivors;
  • Enabling and empowering autonomous girl-led and women’s rights organizations to exercise their expertise.

A goal of the Generation Equality Gender-Based Violence Action Coalition is to have 550 million more women and girls live in countries with laws and policies prohibiting all forms of gender-based violence against women and girls by 2026, among others. During the Forum, UN Women committed to amplifying support and funding to women’s rights organizations by working with partners to secure a minimum of 100 million USD in grants to be allocated through the UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women (UN Trust Fund) over the next five years.

“There is a gender-based violence global emergency,” said Ryan Rogers, Chief Investment Officer for Mary Kay Inc., and Vice President of the Mary Kay Ash FoundationSM Board of Directors. “Violence experienced by women and girls is significantly underreported—but it’s estimated that 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 adolescent girls have experienced physical or sexual violence from an intimate partner. We must take action now. Since 2000, the Mary Kay Ash Foundation has awarded more than $58 million to domestic violence shelters. Our commitment to the Action Coalition on Gender-Based Violence will allow us to stretch that aid even further.”

“Since 1963, Mary Kay has made a commitment to improving the lives of girls and women everywhere,” said Melinda Foster Sellers, Chief People Officer of Mary Kay Inc. “We’re honored to join governments, the private sector, and NGOs across the world with similar aspirations in this pledge to prevent and eliminate gender-based violence. Achieving real equity will transform the world as we know it—investing in women is the most powerful good that we can do to effect meaningful change.”

Last year, Mary Kay Inc. and the Mary Kay Ash Foundation joined forces with the United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence against Women (UN Trust Fund) and CARE, two champions of women’s rights, to further their mission to achieve a world free from violence against women.

Since 1996, the UN Trust Fund has supported 609 organizations for a total value of $198 million in 140 countries and territories, investing in innovative and evidence-based civil society-led solutions and life-changing initiatives at the national and local levels. Through its partnership with the UN Trust Fund, Mary Kay has contributed to funding life-changing projects to protect women and girls in 68 countries and territories in 2021.

In 2021, the UN Trust Fund marks its 25th anniversary of grant-giving, support, and commitment to strengthening civil society and women’s rights organizations. For its anniversary, the Fund invites everyone to take action and join the cause through its crowdfunding challenge, #Give25forUNTF25, to ensure civil society and women’s rights organizations are resourced with long-term and flexible funding.

“The UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women, Mary Kay Inc. and the Mary Kay Ash Foundation have joined forces to achieve the ambition of Sustainable Development Goal 5 and ending violence against women by ensuring long term, core and flexible funding to women’s rights organizations around the world who are first responders to women and girls survivors,” said Vesna Jaric, Officer-In- Charge, UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women. “As the world continues to experience multiple and coinciding crises, associated with increasing rates of violence against women, threatening gains in women’s rights, public-private partnerships are as important as ever to enable lasting results for women and girls around the world.”

Established in 1945, CARE is an international humanitarian organization working around the globe to save lives, defeat poverty, achieve social justice and fight for women and girls. Women and girls are a core focus of CARE because evidence shows that addressing gender inequalities is key to effectively responding to crises, overcoming poverty, and ensuring all people live with dignity and security. In 2020, Mary Kay entered a global partnership with CARE to support the organization’s Crisis Response Campaign and commitment to eradicate gender-based violence everywhere including humanitarian settings.

“It is impossible for women and girls to achieve equality when violence and sexual harassment threaten their security every day,” said Michelle Nunn, President and CEO of CARE. “Across the world, cases of gender-based violence have risen significantly during the COVID-19 pandemic, with calls to helplines increasing 5X in some countries and women locked in with abusers. Mary Kay Inc. and the Mary Kay Ash Foundation are partnering with CARE to ensure we can reduce the risk of gender-based violence and provide comprehensive care for survivors. During 16 Days of Activism, we’re asking the public to join us in answering the call and advocating for structural and social change to end violence against women around the world.”

Mary Kay Inc. and the Mary Kay Ash Foundation join women’s rights advocates the world over in celebrating the 25th anniversary of the UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women and the 75th anniversary of CARE.

The global theme, set by the UN Secretary-General’s UNiTE Campaign, for this 2021’s 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, which will run from 25 November to 10 December 2021, is “Orange the world: End violence against women now!”

About Mary Kay

One of the original glass ceiling breakers, Mary Kay Ash founded her beauty company 58 years ago with three goals: develop rewarding opportunities for women, offer irresistible products, and make the world a better place. That dream has blossomed into a multibillion-dollar company with millions of independent sales force members in nearly 40 countries. Mary Kay is dedicated to investing in the science behind beauty and manufacturing cutting-edge skin care, color cosmetics, nutritional supplements, and fragrances. Mary Kay is committed to empowering women and their families by partnering with organizations from around the world, focusing on supporting cancer research, protecting survivors from domestic abuse, beautifying our communities, and encouraging children to follow their dreams. Mary Kay Ash’s original vision continues to shine—one lipstick at a time. Learn more at MaryKay.com.

About The Mary Kay Ash FoundationSM

Guided by Mary Kay Ash’s dream to enrich the lives of women everywhere, The Mary Kay Ash FoundationSM raises and distributes funds to invest in breakthrough cancer research to find a cure for women-related cancers and ending domestic violence against women. Since 1996, the Mary Kay Ash FoundationSM has contributed more than $80 million to organizations aligned with its two-fold mission. In addition, the Foundation supports awareness initiatives, community outreach programs, and advocates for legislation to ensure women are healthy and safe. Together, we can make the world better for women. To learn more about how to educate, advocate, volunteer and donate, and join life-saving work to support and empower women, visit marykayfoundation.org, find us on Facebook and Instagram, or follow us on Twitter.

About United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence against Women

The United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence against Women (UN Trust Fund), managed by UN Women on behalf of the UN system, is the only global grant-making mechanism exclusively dedicated to eradicating all forms of violence against women and girls. In the 25 years of its existence, it has supported 609 organizations, investing in innovative and evidence-based civil society-led solutions and life-changing projects. The projects funded focus on preventing violence, implementing laws and policies to address and eliminate violence against women and girls, and improving access to essential services for survivors. Learn more at untf.unwomen.org and follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

About CARE

Founded in 1945 with the creation of the CARE Package®, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. CARE has more than seven decades of experience delivering emergency aid during times of crisis. Our emergency responses focus on the needs of the most vulnerable populations, particularly girls and women. Last year CARE worked in 100 countries and reached close to 70 million people around the world. To learn more, visit www.care.org.

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Contact information

Mary Kay Inc. Corporate Communications
marykay.com/newsroom
972.687.5332 or media@mkcorp.com

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