Mary Kay Ash believed that motivation, recognition and an unlimited business opportunity could transform women, empowering them to achieve better lives for themselves and their families. Yet, in an instant, domestic violence threatens and destroys dreams. Here are a few highlights of what we’re doing as a company to protect women and their families and to help end the cycle of domestic violence around the world.
- Since 2004, the Mary Kay Ash Charitable Foundation (MKACF) in Canada has donated funds on an annual basis to deserving women's shelters and community outreach programs that aid the victims of domestic violence. Grant amounts have continued to grow each year of the program and in 2007, the Foundation awarded $5,000 each to one shelter or community outreach program in each province and territory in Canada.
- Each year, proceeds from the sale of Canadian-exclusive MKACF Teddy Bears help to raise funds to support the mission of the MKACF. The limited-edition MKACF Teddy Bears are a tangible, heart-warming way for consumers, independent sales force members and corporate staff to support the foundation.
- In 2006, the MKACF committed to donating $10,000 each year for the next three years to Victim Services of Peel, a not-for-profit, charitable agency servicing the cities of Brampton and Mississauga in the Region of Peel. One of many services offered by the group, the crisis intervention program provides professional counseling services to persons victimized by sexual assault and other traumatic incidences. To recognize the donation, Victim Services of Peel named their “Living Wall” to honour the MKACF and its commitment to supporting community outreach programs that work to put an end to violence against women. The Living Wall – a massive indoor green space located at the Victim Services of Peel offices – features hundreds of plants designed to symbolize re-growth, life and new beginnings.
- Since 2000, Mary Kay Inc. and the Mary Kay Ash Charitable Foundation have awarded more than $11 million to domestic violence prevention programs and to women’s shelters across the United States. In the last two years, the Foundation distributed 300 grants to women’s shelters in all 50 states totaling $6 million.
- In 2006 and 2007, Mary Kay Inc. and members of its independent sales force lobbied Congress in Washington, D.C., to appropriate funding for the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). The Company and independent sales force members lobbied for the passage of VAWA in the mid-1990s and for the reauthorization of this important act in 2005.
- In the spring of 2007, Mary Kay Inc. sponsored a special event on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., along with other direct selling companies and the National Network to End Domestic Violence and the National Network to End Sexual Violence to raise awareness of domestic violence.
- In an effort to recognize the contribution of Mary Kay Ash to women and for changing women’s lives, the Texas Legislature and the Governor of Georgia proclaimed Mary Kay Day in May 2007. The Governor and State of Alabama also proclaimed Mary Kay Day in May 2006 on the steps of the Alabama Capitol Building in Montgomery.
- In 2007, the Dallas County Commissioner’s Court approved ongoing and permanent funding of two full-time positions in the family violence section of the District Attorney’s office following an unprecedented two-year public/private partnership grant from Mary Kay Inc. that allowed for the creation of these positions.
- In 2002, Mary Kay Inc. underwrote the groundbreaking documentary “Breaking the Silence: Journeys of Hope,” which addresses the issue of violence against women. In 2005 the Company sponsored a second documentary, “Breaking the Silence: The Children’s Stories,” which focused on the impact of domestic violence on children.
- The Direct Selling Association awarded Mary Kay Inc. with its Vision for Tomorrow Award in 2002, 2006, and 2007 for the Company’s community efforts to raise awareness and stop violence against women and children.
- Since 2001, Mary Kay Mexico has helped create, construct and operate numerous domestic violence shelters for women throughout the country. Mary Kay Mexico created the Dar amor y esperanza program (the give, love and hope program), a non-profit program that offers financial support to governmental agencies that provide educational programs and shelter to victims of violence. To date, the Dar Program has raised 6.5 million pesos, and contributions to the program have been instrumental in funding seven of the 40 shelters for abused women that currently operate in Mexico. More than 1,200 families and 10,000 women have received psychological and legal support through these specialized centers.
- In Mexico, one out of two women will be a victim of domestic violence at least once in her lifetime, and Mary Kay Mexico is leading the way to raise awareness of this issue. It is the only direct selling company in Mexico that is working in conjunction with government organizations to implement non-violence education programs. To help raise even more funds and awareness about this issue, the Company donates a portion of the sales of Tribute® fragrance, a scent inspired by Mary Kay Ash. The independent sales force also contributes through sales of specific promotional items offered by the Company. In 2007, the Company honored Mary Kay Ash on her birthday by making a donation of one million pesos to the Dar Program.
- Mary Kay China established a domestic violence hotline for women in conjunction with the All China Women’s Federation. The service began in January 2003 for the women of Shanghai, the city where Mary Kay China headquarters is located. In 2005, Mary Kay China expanded the hotline to serve 33 cities.
- To help raise awareness and end domestic violence in Brazil, Mary Kay Brazil launched its own version of the Dar amor y esperanza program (the give, love and hope program). The corporate team in Sao Paulo launched a very successful campaign to the independent sales force in April 2007 called “It is time to donate.” Whenever an independent sales force member purchases a special cellular phone accessory from the Company, a portion of the proceeds are donated to help victims of domestic violence in Brazil. The Mary Kay independent sales force has embraced the program with great enthusiasm, and has already exceeded the goals initially set for the promotion. Mary Kay Brazil plans to announce which domestic violence organization it will support during the Company’s 10th anniversary year in 2008. A cheque will be presented to the organization during the annual Seminar event in February 2008.