Reese Witherspoon is using her experience as a domestic violence campaigner to judge a pioneering women's awards ceremony in the U.K. The Oscar-winning actress is honorary chairwoman of the Avon Foundation, which is teaming up with the Women's Aid charity to launch the Empowering Women's Awards, a ceremony to honor females who have survived violence in the home.
And Witherspoon is delighted she's been asked to oversee the nominations and winners of the awards. She tells Britain's Marie Claire magazine, "Domestic violence affects one in four women in the U.K. and many are suffering in silence. It's so important that we find a way to reach out in every community and offer our understanding, protection and support."
"I'm very proud to be part of the first ever Avon and Women's Aid Empowerment Awards in association with Marie Claire, drawing attention to the bravery of some incredible women who have stood up against domestic violence, and celebrating the achievements of others who are determined to end this debilitating pandemic."
Other judges on the panel include Sarah Brown, the wife of British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, and TV chef Gordon Ramsay's wife Tana. The award winners will be announced in late 2010.