In less than a month, a fund to provide legal defense to the victims of sexual violence has garnered nearly $19.5 million in donations. And the other day, the fund got a major boost from a celebrity pair well-known for their charity.
This weekend, celebrity couple John Legend and Chrissy Teigen donated $200,000 to the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund, a campaign started at the beginning of this month to provide legal support and representation to victims of sexual violence.
The pair’s donation, which was first reported by People Magazine, was made “on behalf of the heroic gymnasts on the USA Olympic Team.”
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Legend and Teigen are not the first celebrities to make a major contribution to the fund. Other notable donations include $500,000 pledges from Meryl Streep, Reese Witherspoon, Shonda Rhimes, Jennifer Aniston, Melinda Gates, and Sandra Bullock. Another celebrity couple, Jessica and Justin Timberlake, donated $20,000 to the fund, according to CNN Money.
The Time’s Up campaign is the most successful crowdfunding initiative ever recorded on the GoFundMe platform, according to a GoFundMe representative who spoke with CNN Money. The money will go to the National Women’s Law Center, and will “help survivors of sexual harassment and retaliation in all industries — especially low-income women and people of color,” according to a press release on their website.
The donation from Teigen and Legend comes in the wake of the sentencing of USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar, who was accused by more than 150 women of sexual misconduct and received a sentence of 40 to 175 years in prison.
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According to Judge Rosemarie Aquilina, who presided over the case, Nassar will be required to provide “a reasonable amount” of restitution to the victims of his actions. But many victims expressed relief at the simple fact that Nassar will most likely spend the rest of his life behind bars.
“He’s going away for a really long time, he’s not practicing medicine anymore, and he’s not fooling anyone anymore,” one victim, Kyle Stephens, said after Nassar was sentenced. “All of these girls grew up to be strong women who destroyed his world.”
Global Citizen campaigns on the Global Goals for Sustainable Development, which include goal number five, gender equality, which calls for the elimination of “all forms of violence against all women and girls in the public and private spheres, including trafficking and sexual and other types of exploitation.” You can join us and take action here.
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This isn’t the first time Legend and Teigen, who have a 2-year-old daughter, Luna, and are expecting to give birth to a baby boy later this year, have supported women through a financial donation.
After a Planned Parenthood office was attacked by an armed gunman, the couple made a donation to the organization, which provides reproductive health services. This past year, Teigen helped send a young woman, Mercedes Edney, to beauty school with a $5,000 GoFundMe donation.
Their latest act of charity could go a long way toward helping to end the culture of sexual assault that men like Nassar engaged in, ultimately paving the way toward a better world for their daughter and their son-to-be.