“The L Word’s” Jennifer Beals is hoping to shed light on the plight of women in Afghanistan with a special night of readings from the Afghan Women’s Writing Project.
The actress – along with other members from the Women’s Committees of AFTRA, SAG (which Jennifer is a member of), WGA West and the PGA & Women in Film will perform selected essays and poems in honor of International Women’s Day on March 8 at the Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles.
AccessHollywood.com caught up with Jennifer earlier this week, where she told us what inspired her to get involved with this great cause.
“I had spent a little bit of time in Ethiopia and on the way home was reading ‘Thousand Splendid Suns’ [by ‘Kite Runner’ author Khaled Hosseini] and though it’s a work of fiction… it was truly educational for me,” she told Access. “It just really opened my eyes up to the restrictions that are in place around the world for women that are so abhorrent, and to say it enraged me would be a gross understatement.”
Jennifer wants the audience to leave with a greater understanding of these women’s lives and a deeper appreciation of our own freedoms.
“I hope [the audience will be] made more aware of the suffering and the strength of these women from Afghanistan… to be aware that we are incredibly privileged to live in a country that is not as restrictive as Afghanistan,” she continued. “We certainly are more free than women in Afghanistan, but there are certainly restrictions here that if men don’t directly put on women that women will put on themselves. It’s also a reminder that it is incumbent upon us to live as authentically as we possibly can.”
The Afghan Women’s Writing Project isn’t the only project to which the busy actress is lending her voice. She also recently completed a photographic book, “The L Word Book” about her beloved Showtime series, which will benefit several different charities including The Matthew Shepard Foundation, Mia Kirshner’s I Live Here Projects - a Project of ETINA and The Pablove Foundation.