The UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women (UN Trust Fund) hosted it's gala on Wednesday November 16, 2016. The benefit celebrated 20 years of vital work to end violence against women and girls, showcasing a range of innovative interventions that are working to end the pandemic globally. Co-hosted by UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka and Oscar-winning actress and UN Women Goodwill Ambassador Nicole Kidman, the packed high-profile event brought together gender rights activists, UN officials and the private sector, spotlighting beneficiaries and their life-changing work across the world.

Violence against women and girls is now part of the public discourse much more than ever before, along with significant progress in legislation and grassroots efforts to address the issue. Yet, it continues to be a gross human rights violation of pandemic proportions. Today, one in three women worldwide have experienced physical or sexual violence--mostly by an intimate partner. The UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women is the only global grant-making mechanism dedicated to eradicating all forms of violence against women and girls. Managed by UN Women, on behalf of the UN system, during the last 20 years, more than 400 organizations have been supported by the UN Trust Fund with results that indicate sustained resources and dedicated work can lead to the prevention and elimination of violence against women and girls. Focusing on prevention of violence, implementation of laws and policies, and improving access to vital services for survivors, the UN Trust Fund has spent the past 20 years focused exclusively on funding life-changing programmes for millions of women and girls.

"I am here because I support the UN Trust Fund and I applaud and celebrate its 20 years of making a difference," said Nicole Kidman, UN Women Goodwill Ambassador. "When I became UN Women's Goodwill Ambassador 10 years ago, my first mission took me to Kosovo, where I met with women and girls who had survived violence. That was when I first understood what the work of the UN Trust Fund really means. I saw first-hand the real difference it makes in lives of women and girls: They found shelter for themselves and their children. They received counseling to overcome the horrific trauma of rape during the war that had ravaged the Balkans. They were supported to make a living and stand on their own. It was a life-changing experience for me and one that has inspired me ever since. This is why, as UN Women's Goodwill Ambassador, I see my role as that of an advocate to end violence against women and girls."

During the event, Mrs. Ban Soon-taek, Patron of the UN Women for Peace Association, a key supporter of the UN Trust Fund, was presented with the UN Trust Fund's Orange Heart, for her outstanding efforts to end violence against women and girls.

My fellow board members from UN Women For Peace Association were with me: Rema DuPont, Valbona Neritani, Sharon Bush, and Nassrin Iromloo Zahedi to take celebrate Ms. Ban Soon-taek's new honor.

Moderated by NBC journalist Richard Lui, with an Honorary Host Committee comprised of actors and actresses Sir Patrick Stewart, Danai Gurira, Ruth Wilson, Gillian Anderson, and Kelly LeBrock as well as luminaries such as Kweku Mandela, the event brought together 300 people at the Loeb Boathouse in New York's Central Park, who heard moving stories of impact and change from beneficiaries of UN Trust Fund-supported projects.

The gala also saw the official launch of the Orange Label, the result of a partnership between the UN Trust Fund and the UK-based prestigious London College of Fashion, which aims to adorn a variety of products and engage small and large scale companies around the world. Designed by students of the college, the Orange Label will be used as a brand for cause-related marketing initiatives to benefit UN Trust Fund supported programmes. Through the fashion and associated industries, the Label will connect the private sector and UN Trust Fund supported programmes in joint efforts to prevent and end the pandemic of violence against women and girls.

SAVE THE DATE: UN Women For Peace Association (UNWFPA) is hosting their Annual Awards Luncheon will be held on March 10, 2017. That following sunday March 12, 2017 UNWFPA will host their March in March in celebration on Women's Rights. Women's Rights Are Human Rights.

Today, nearly 5 million women and girls are living in slavery, victims of human trafficking. 60 million more are child brides, and 140 million live with the pain of forced genital mutilation.These are more than just numbers, they are our mothers, our sisters, and our daughters.

The UN Women for Peace Association, Inc. was founded in 2008, under the patronage of H.E. Mrs. Ban Soon-taek, the wife of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. We help to advance the goals of academic and charitable organizations that provide opportunities for women to partake in the global peace building process through social, cultural, educational and women empowerment programs.

The UNWFPA is committed to the prevention of violence against women and girls, to the provision of services to those affected by violence, to strengthening the implementation of laws and policies against violence, and to the empowerment of women in countries and societies where they are under-advantaged.

Much of our energy is directed toward raising funds for the United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women. The UN Trust Fund, established by the General Assembly in 1996 and managed by UN Women, focuses in particular on developing countries, countries in conflict, and post-conflict settings. Our contributions to the Trust Fund directly fund these efforts

The UN Women for Peace Association is dedicated to activities that promote tolerance and respect toward the creation of a peaceful world.