25 September, 2008
From the site:
We do have the power to build on our maternal legacies and forever heal the next generation. Mariska Hargaitay uses her actress talents every time she plays detective Olivia Benson on Law & Order:SVU Special Victim’s Unit to boldly breakdown stereotypes and be a role model for improving how sexual assault are treated. It is no accident She is the daughter of sex screen goddess, Jayne Mansfield.
Jayne Mansfield, an icon of the 1950s, was a self-promoter and gained fame by satirizing Marilyn Monroe. Mansfield, through her comedic caricatures, was almost alone in exposing the hypocrisy of a period that was both obsessed and repelled by sexual matters.
Her last two relationships, a marriage to Matt Cimber and relationship with Sam Brody were both domestically violent and Jayne was fully addicted to drugs and diet pills.
Mariska was only three years old when she was involved in the crash and has no memory of the event that killed her mother. She has a zig-zag scar down the side of her head.
“As a woman, it’s gratifying to play a part that’s a multi-layered challenge. Olivia is not only a competent, street-smart cop, she’s an empathetic woman who can respond compassionately to victims of terrible crimes without compromising her professionalism.” – Mariska
Mariska’s work on Law & Order has prompted her to help real-life survivors of sexual assault. In 2002, she founded the Joyful Heart Foundation, which is dedicated to introducing dolphin-human therapy to survivors of sexual assault. Working hand in hand with rape-crisis centers and counselors, the Joyful Heart Foundation synthesizes all of the components of the healing process (mental, physical, emotional, spiritual, social and environmental) into one therapeutic experience.
Mariska sits on the board of the Mount Sinai SAVI (Sexual Assault and Violence Intervention) program and has done public service announcements for NBC’s “The More You Know” campaign, as well as for Safe Horizons, a national advocacy program for victims of crime and abuse and has lent her time and resources to the Santa Monica Rape Crisis Treatment Center.