“I am careful for her not to know [exactly] how big of a problem this is and the details of it. But she knows that Mommy does a lot of work for justice for women and that in many countries, sometimes our rights are not given or respected,” Hayek Pinault — who was the guest of honor at Avon’s Communication Awards, part of the Avon Foundation’s Speak Out Against Domestic Violence campaign, in New York City on Thursday — tells PEOPLE.
“And that we have to stand up for us as a gender. It’s important to stick together.”
Although the actress no longer has a contract with Avon, she still partners with the company to further the cause.
“Every year they make an empowerment product that they give 100 percent of what they make,” Hayek Pinault, 46, says. “This year is a charm necklace that has this infinity symbol that represents the limitless potential for the life led without violence. Of course Valentina wants the necklace herself, but that’s a good sign.”
Traveling with her daughter whenever possible makes the balancing act between work and motherhood a little easier for the family to manage.
“I’ve never been apart from her more than a five days or a week. She’s in kindergarten but actually right now in France they have holiday. The good news is that the French have a holiday every month!” says Hayek Pinault with a laugh. “I just love waking up with her — sometimes she sleeps with me. I’m just grateful for every second that I can spend with her.”
– Julie Jordan