Halle Berry was honored with the Creative Conscience Award for her volunteer work with the Jenesse Center, the oldest domestic violence intervention programs in Los Angeles.
During her acceptance speech, Halle recalled a turbulent time in her life growing up as she witnessed her mother suffer at the hands of her husband.
“I’m a victim of domestic violence,” the Oscar winner said tonight at unite4:good’s unite4:humunity gala, where she was honored for work with the center. “I wasn’t married to a man that beat me up, but my mother was.”
Berry was just 5 years old when she witnessed the horrific abuse. Her mom was beaten “day after day after day,” Berry said.
She watched her get “kicked down stairs” and hit in the head with a wine bottle when she wasn’t looking.
“Knowing that she wanted nothing more then for her little girls to see her be empowered and be a woman of strength, but having no way to make that happen was heartbreaking for me,” Berry said.
Sadly, the abuse continued for some time. “She stayed for too long and her children, my sister and I, saw far too much and I’ve suffered the damage of being a child of domestic violence,” Berry said.
She began working with Jenesse 15 years ago.
“The reason I say this organization is my heart and soul is because I understand the good that it does and the lives that it changes and the impact it has on women and the children in our community,” Berry said.
So sad. If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-(800) 799-7233.