Hargitay still bears a small scar on her head and her siblings, Mickey Jr. Three-and-a-half years old at the time, Hargetay’s scar would represent a lifetime of loss and longing for her mother.At the Texas Film Hall of Fame Awards, Hargitay, seated next to me, whispers, “I wish my mother could have been here.This year’s Joyful Revolution Gala — an event that’s raised over million over the past eight years — will honor Vice President Joe Biden, author of the landmark Violence Against Women Act, at New York City’s Lincoln Center.
This story first appeared in the April 05, 2016 issue of Variety. “It’s our responsibility to apply our best thinking to these issues that have been underfunded, under-researched, and under-regarded for so long,” adds the mom of three, whose “No More” PSA campaign — which she directed — has generated more than 4 billion media impressions.
“I believe the resistance to making them a priority is deeply entrenched in the way women are regarded in our world.” Through Joyful Heart, Hargitay has worked with the medical community, the criminal justice system and law enforcement to generate attention, funding and, most importantly, legislation.
She would have enjoyed this honor so much.” On stage, Hargitay, teary after the film clip tribute to her mother, tells the audience, “My mother always considered Texas her home and to be here to accept this on her behalf, in the state that loved her so much, is something she would have loved.” Nary a dry eye in the house, Hargitay recounts her own roots in Texas.
“I loved coming to visit my grandparents in Dallas every summer.
For her work creating the foundation, Hargitay is receiving the Karma Award from the Karma Automotive company at Variety’s Power of Women New York luncheon on April 8 at Cipriani Midtown.
Karma Automotive will make a donation to Joyful Heart. “The fact that there’s this underlying belief that a world without sexual assault and domestic violence is not a realistic goal is one of the major obstacles to getting there,” Hargitay says.
It’s imperative to envision a world where women can feel safe, says Mariska Hargitay.
Inspired by her role on NBC’s hit “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” she created the Joyful Heart Foundation to heal, educate and empower survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence and child abuse.
But, Hollywood didn’t yet comprehend the intensity of Hargitay’s commitment and fortitude, which runs in her blood.
"If you tell yourself you're strong, you're strong.
Yet, she’s a very funny person who makes her living immersed in heavy drama.