Salma Hayek Pinault Fights to Empower Women With Chime for Change

In 2013, Salma Hayek Pinault co-founded Chime for Change with Beyonce and international fashion powerhouse Gucci. The campaign supports nongovernmental agencies with the mission of empowering women and girls around the world through initiatives focused on education, health and justice.

Chime for Change has so far raised $7.3 million with 153 nonprofit partners to fund projects in 88 countries, benefiting 400,000 women and girls. “All the issues with poverty affect women double,” Hayek says. “When it comes to access to education, it’s always going to be the boys who have the few chances.”

Chime for Change suggests nonprofit organizations that will help disadvantaged communities.

Pamela Littky for Variety

After a trip to Lebanon in April, Hayek helped launch Chime for the Children of Syria, devoted to offering education to kids in the region. “I was able to go to the refugee camps and have a close relationship with the people who are there,” Hayek says. “You never understand the conflict until you’re living with the people and seeing it with your own eyes. So many details come up that is so hard to imagine.”

Chime for Change has also teamed with Global Citizen on a long-term partnership to build a global campaign focused on critical issues facing women and girls around the world.

Hayek says she’s been devoted to field work her entire life, travelling throughout Europe, Central and South America and Africa, where she saw a baby die of tetanus in Sierra Leone in 2008.

“This is her heart,” says Caryl Stern, president of the U.S. Fund for Unicef and an advisory board member for Chime for Change. “She is truly passionate about the rights of women and young girls.”

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