American Morning

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December 14th, 2010
07:35 AM ET

Big Stars, Big Giving: Halle Berry on helping victims of domestic violence

Editor's Note: In an American Morning original series, "Big Stars, Big Giving," CNN National Correspondent Alina Cho looks at celebrity philanthropy and how these big stars can make a big impact. Through one-on-one interviews with Nicole Kidman, Halle Berry, Edward Norton, Julianne Moore and Justin Bieber, she shares what causes have become their passions, and how you can get involved. The one-hour special debuts December 24th and airs again on December 25th.

Halle Berry may be best known for her work in "Monster's Ball" and "Introducing Dorothy Dandridge," but did you know she's also been working to help victims of domestic violence?

Berry has been a volunteer at the Jenesse Center, a shelter for domestic violence victims, for more than a decade. She chose the Jenesse Center, in part because she grew up with domestic violence.

“I think I’ve spent my adult life dealing with the sense of low self esteem that that sort-of implanted in me," Berry says. "When I see the woman that I aspire to be like, being my mother, be beaten and treated like the gum on the bottom of your shoe, in some ways, that’s how I started to feel about myself.”

Berry is currently donating her time and money toward rebuilding rundown apartments at the shelter so women who flee their abusive partners have a clean and happy place of refuge.

To find out more about the Jenesse Center or to make a donation, visit If you live in the Los Angeles area and need help from an abusive situation, call the Jenesse Center at 1800-479-7328. For help outside the L.A. area, call the National Domestic Violence hotline at 1800-799-7233.

To learn more on giving, and ways you can make a difference this holiday season, visit Impact Your World.

soundoff (3 Responses)
  1. Ray2447

    Domestic violence will never end as long as the whole truth about it is misrepresented to comply with feminist ideology. V.P. Biden recently called violence against women, "the very worst abuse." The very worst abuse is valuing one life less than another for having been born the wrong gender. Under domestic violence law, the wrong gender is men. Shelter and services are virtually non-existent for male victims of domestic violence. Options out of a bad relationship, that women have, are often not available to men. Men wind up gender profiled and falsely accused by the taxpayer funded, domestic violence industry, because of gender feminist ideology controlling the d.v. industry. Men are often battered by domestic violence, and then battered again by the taxpayer funded, domestic violence industry as shown in "Los Misandry" at Youtube.

    December 15, 2010 at 5:48 am |
  2. Abigail

    How about we do something as a society and a culture to make perpetrators of domestic violence (DV) accountable for their actions – especially MONETARILY. That way, women don't have to flee to shelters. (Although having a haven is good and necessary in many cases.) The family law courts are almost completely ignorant about this epidemic that affects the upper middle class too. I have a dream that every college senior must take a course in how to spot malignant narcissists, including a portion of forensic psychology to spot the markers from their childhood....and how their abusive childhoods repeat in their adult relationships, especially as their brains age and deteriorate.

    Awareness, awareness, awareness, and then accountability, accountability, accountability.

    Thank you Halle Berry for bringing awareness.

    December 14, 2010 at 10:30 pm |
  3. kevin

    I think it is wonderful to lend such support to what is a very worthy cause. there are so many women and children who suffer through this on a daily basis . please remember that their are many men who suffer domestic violence and also men who are falsely accused who suffer because what those allegations can do to your reputation . I wish that the courts woould do something about those liars

    December 14, 2010 at 10:28 am |