Jennifer Garner on poverty: Once you see how our neighbors live, you can’t unsee it

Jennifer Garner was honored over the weekend at a gala for Baby2Baby, which distributes needed supplies for babies and mothers. She’s been involved with Save The Children and Baby2Baby for years, and spoke passionately about her work with the organization. Matthew McConaughey presented her with the Giving Tree Award (remember they were in Ghosts of Girlfriends Past together) and she received a standing ovation for her speech, which emphasized that there are people living in poverty who need help:

In a powerful acceptance speech resulting in a standing ovation, Jennifer Garner explained, “But truly, imagine not having the option of making your child comfortable – imagine living in a life of poverty that seems to have no way out. You don’t have to imagine it – follow Baby2baby’s case workers back to where they are making donations, to any of the number of shelters, to Save the Children’s programs in Central Valley, California. Once you see the way our neighbors are living, you can’t unsee it, I can promise you that.”

The evening also featured remarks from Baby2Baby’s star studded supporters including Kate Hudson, Jessica Alba, Rachel Zoe, Kelly Rowland, and Molly Sims who spoke about the dangers low-income families face without access to basic necessities and applauded the organization’s leadership in uniting the Los Angeles community and beyond on behalf of a philanthropic movement to support the children Baby2Baby serves and help end the cycle of poverty.

Boyz II Men brought down the house with an incredible performance, handing out roses to an animated crowd. The A list stars and philanthropists then made their way to the after party, DJ’d by Samantha Ronson and Nikki Pennie. Stars including Jessica Alba and Stevie Wonder danced in the crowd.

[From Baby2Baby, received via email]

E! has more quotes from Garner’s speech and it was powerful:

“My mom grew up dirt poor with 10 siblings, no running water and no electricity in dustbowl depression in Oklahoma. I grew up one generation, one holler away from poverty. If you tell the world that we are gathering here tonight all dressed up like prom… they might think we’re crazy. But the truth is, I’ve seen this message in action. The tiniest thing can tip the balance from past hope to chance.”

[From E! Online]

That’s what we call a “hollow” in the south, or an area between the mountains, “holler,” because it’s pronounced that way. I never realized that Garner’s mom lived in poverty and no wonder this cause is important to her.

Garner wore a navy blue textured gown with small floral appliques. It was both classic and interesting with clever details and was a great choice for this event.

Here’s Kate Hudson (also one of McConaughey’s romcom costars) in J. Mendel. Her makeup reminds me of Jennifer Lopez and there’s something going on with the bust area of the gown, but I think it’s just really giving a great pushup effect. This is a pretty dress.

Both Jenna Dewan Tatum and Jordana Brewster had the misfortune of wearing Marchesa. Can’t you tell? There’s so much going on with Jenna’s fug dress, it’s got one of those fold down half bustlines, there are multiple side ruffles on the waist, there’s a huge slit and it has pink and green sequin flowers on her boobs.

Look at this ill fitting peach jumpsuit with a silver feather pattern. Cher wouldn’t be caught dead in this.

Jessica Alba is the best dressed at Monster High prom in this tulle Valentino. Something nice: the birds are cool, I love her hair, and she looks vintage without going for “sexy.” Maybe I do like this gown.

Speaking of sexy here’s Camila Alves in Zuhair Murad.

 

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66 Responses to “Jennifer Garner on poverty: Once you see how our neighbors live, you can’t unsee it”

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  1. Squiggisbig says:

    Jennifer Garner looks so nice! What a great charity.

    Kate hudson’s makeup is a nightmare. Yuck.

  2. Mar says:

    Kate looks very off in the face.

  3. Lorn says:

    I grew up in the same town in West Virginia as Garner, although I’m a few years younger and didn’t know her. There is a lot of poverty in the area. I’m proud of her for fighting a good fight! She does a lot for her hometown.

  4. Canadian Becks says:

    Kate was born very flat-chested, so those are a size up from her 1st implants that were done years ago, no?

  5. Sunnydaze says:

    Very nice message, and I’m glad she acknowledged the whole “prom” thing. I always have weird conflicting feelings about these celebrities making more money than god taking on charities that involve extreme poverty. I know I shouldnt, but there’s always something about it that makes it feel a bit phony and exploitative.

  6. HejHej says:

    Is it maybe the flashlight that makes Kate look so horrible? It’s not just her makeup that looks off to me..

    Jennifer looks great and it’s a great cause to support.

  7. Nala says:

    the lady from the fast and furious looks so different I didn’t even recognize her. That is her right? –checks IMDb — wow.

  8. S says:

    I dislike Garner’s dress and hairstyle. So blah, so frumpy. That forehead is botoxed to death!

    It’s honestly extremely hard to believe that she and Ben are secretly back together at this point. This Baby2Baby honor for charity work is a really nice thing. It’s also something that seems to be very important to her. This isn’t some dime-a-dozen movie premiere on the other side of the world — these are the types of things that you share and celebrate with loved ones. And she’s there by herself. How sad. I don’t know this woman & I am not inside her head but that strikes me as a very LONELY thing. Ben would have been there if he cared. He doesn’t. He looked like he had a very late night, shall we say, on the church stroll on Sunday. I also have it on pretty good authority that he started dating someone this summer. No clue if he still is & that doesn’t really have any bearing on the rest of my post. He is not sitting around by himself, is my point. He’s putting himself out there. His ability to keep it quiet is incredibly impressive. Jen needs to get out there herself & start dating. She seems to have very low self-esteem & I think it would do her a world of good to spend time with a man who actually wants to be with her.

  9. Greenieweenie says:

    It doesn’t surprise me that she grew up one generation away from poverty. People have characterized her in the past as someone who really pursued Ben Affleck for his movie stardom (who knows if that’s really true or just your day-to-day sexism in action). People have also said she’s clever about how she uses the press, etc. The point is: I see a worker–someone who knows how to take an opportunity and squeeze everything they can out of it. And I think the people who do that best are those who know they’re only a hop, skip, and a jump away from a difficult life. Lord knows that fear has kept me ticking since the day I started my first job picking berries.

  10. Lady D says:

    There’s a lot of people out there who find it very easy to turn their back on the poverty stricken. I ended up in an area of Vancouver once that had a lot of homeless people, with my 4-year-old. I had to explain homeless people to him. His response was to tell me, in tears, that we could fit 9 of them in our basement, let’s bring them home. My sister, who was given everything her heart desired, along with encouragement, support, love and whatever else loving parents give you, used to think it was funny to drive in that area so she and her children could laugh at the same homeless people.
    There are so many with so much who either pretend the poor don’t exist, or they exist for entertainment purposes.
    I know a lady that spends $150/week on her dog and 2 cats. Her money, her choice, but I can’t help but think how even one week donated to a shelter could help so many animals.
    I despair of ever making the blind see. Damn, this election has got me down this week.

    • SilverUnicorn says:

      “I know a lady that spends $150/week on her dog and 2 cats. Her money, her choice, but I can’t help but think how even one week donated to a shelter could help so many animals.”

      It depends what you mean. If that is spent on toiletries, OK. But genuine food for cats/dogs is actually super-expensive (here in UK, at least) and if I wanted to avoid all the junk food for my two cats, it’ll be unaffordable for us. I have brought some brands they don’t like to the local cat-shelter. I’ve also donated our stuff and unused duvets to homeless shelters. But sorry no, I wouldn’t fit them in my spare room or loft whilst the local council continues to build houses for the rich and keeps some council houses empty for nobody’s benefit.

  11. Pandy says:

    I think Jennifer’s gown just makes her look loooong. Kate’s makeup is ugh. Jordan’s Brewster (I think that’s her?) is very thin.

  12. J says:

    Yeh I also would have thought that he would have been there for her. But most likely she did not want him there. If they really are together (and the multiple sightings and Ben going to church with seems to make it lean that way) and they are not ready to go public – so he would not be with her.

    I do think Ben being at church with her is a bit of a statement – he seems to usually only go when Jen is not available. ET was reporting on their video portion of the article that they sat close etc…. Who knows

    • Britt says:

      I fail to see how going to church with the kids is perceived to be some kind of statement but skipping a well-attended event honoring her charity work isn’t. He didn’t even put anything out about it on social media. The biggest part of co-parenting young kids through a divorce is maintaining a sense of normalcy and schedule. That would include dropping them off at school and going to church. He’s attended church with her and the kids plenty of times. The Gala was a Jen thing …and he skipped it.

    • chic says:

      Well I saw a video on x17 from last week when they took their son to some coffee shop. Ben parks and then walks into the store, leaving Jen (who was carrying the kid) to pay the meter while paps were in her face. LOL. Oh but ET has a source that said he didn’t sit on the other side of the church from her. Hmmm, yeaaaaah. I think it’s pretty clear that they are leading separate lives but do things together for their young kids. The end.

    • JoJo says:

      Well, not exactly true. When they got back from Atlanta last Fall, they were in a similar mode. They were spotted almost every weekend together with the kids at the Farmer’s Matket and church. They were also pap’d going out to dinner together alone at that time (with friends – no kids.) Thats how they operated until Ben went to film Live by Night. And then with him in London for 5 months, he probably just wasn’t home as much to do these things, so now it seems surprising again even though they’ve always done this. I do think it’s suspicious that they haven’t made any attempts to move on publicly though. The fact that he wasn’t at Baby2Baby isn’t shocking to me. If he attended, they’d be pretty much confirming they’re together whereas these church and school outings leave it open to interpretation and can be brushed off as co-parenting. I think they are probably settling back into their old routine of being together but unhappy as one outlet put it yesterday.

      • chic says:

        LOL that’s just it. They’re confirming that they’re not together. I agree with the poster upthread who said that this is a very special event. She does good work for this charity and for kids in poverty. Not like she’ll get this award again. She’d want her partner to be there. He wasn’t.

      • mel says:

        ^ Yeah, they always go to church together so i don’t know what @J is on about. I also remember seeing pictures of them grocery shopping (without the kids) last year post-nannygate. Odd.
        They are obviously back together since they are attached at the hip 24/7. They are spotted getting morning coffee literally everyday, that’s not what separated couples do. Also, their reps have been silent ever since they got busted on a date a few weeks ago, which is very telling.

      • Jessica says:

        “think it’s suspicious that they haven’t made any attempts to move on publicly” You pretty much answered your own question. Ben can sneak around and hide dates/relationships if he wants to. We don’t see him all day every day. He flew in and out of LA for events and we didn’t get pics or sightings. You seem to be so sure that he’s secretly back with Jen so why would it be hard to believe that he’s secretly seeing someone else? Whoever they date publicly is going to get scrutinized and be an immediate source of tabloid gossip. Look at Meghan Markle. Two weeks ago who had even heard of her? If Prince Harry can hide a relationship with an actress for months when they live half a planet apart I’m pretty sure anyone famous can. I doubt either Ben or Jen want to jump into a serious relationship after ending a 10-year marriage so why put an innocent person through the public ringer if it’s just a casual relationship?

      • Kayla says:

        @mel They aren’t “obviously back together” nor are they attached at the hip 24/7. Where was he last night? Where was he the night of the gala? There is no affection between them whatsoever. They don’t even look like they’re on decent terms. The fact that he’s completely ignored her charity award in every way is very telling. As for their alleged silence, one of the tabloids ran a story that Ben was pissed off about Jen’s people spilling stuff and we haven’t heard a substantial peep since then. Evidently he’s put the kibosh on that for once and for all

      • JoJo says:

        @Jessica – I’m just speculating. On one hand, they’ve always done these things together and have even gone out alone in the past, so it’s possible they’re still just co-parenting. But on the flip side, yeah, I do think it’s weird that they haven’t moved on publicly at all. If you believe they were separated for months before they announced, then we’re coming up on almost two years that they’ve been separated. Yes, they were married for 10 years, but so was Casey Affleck who also has kids. Goop and Chris were married for 10 years with kids. They all moved on to other relationships. What makes Ben and Jen so different. Why the need to be so secretive for so long if the end game is divorce?

      • Jessica says:

        @Jojo For the same reason Ben felt the need to fly to remote Canada to be with his mistress, a little trip we wouldn’t have ever known about if not for surveillance camera footage and a couple of locals blabbing. Image. PR. He has had a very tough time with the press and seems to have an almost obsessive need to be perceived as a good guy. He really thinks that it’s linked to his success as an actor/director (although The Accountant’s success should prove to him that it’s not the case at all). As for the other couples that you mentioned: as far as I know, Goop and Chris Martin have yet to walk a red carpet with their new SOs. We know about those relationships thanks to tabloids and some revealing social media posts. As for Casey, if you believe CDAN his new gf sold him out and told the paps where to be to take those pics. Pap photos of him are extremely rare and usually linked to family stuff with Ben. All of a sudden there were pics of him on the beach.

      • J says:

        There is another x17 video out today from this morning of Jen going into the coffee shop to pick up coffee etc while Ben and Sam waited in the car. This seems to be the regular routine when neither one is out of town. My guess is they bring the girls to school and there is some time to kill before Sam’s preschool starts – thus the group coffee stops.

        Is there anyone out there that does this with their ex routinely?

      • Mo says:

        Co-parenting. As they’ve always said. And well, Jen accepted an important charity award and Ben wasn’t there. Are there couples who are together (or even trying to work things out) and supportive of each other who do that?

      • J says:

        I agree – Ben should have been at baby2baby gala to support Jen. Partners or not – she is the mother of his 3 children – and they are at the least on friendly terms – He should have been there. (As an aside it does not seem like any of her family came to LA to support her either – ie her parents, sisters etc)

      • JoJo says:

        I think they’re back together. That’s JMO. I don’t think Ben not being at Baby2Baby is any indicator. Ben has never been at many of her events, and if they don’t want to publicly confirm they’re together, she may have even told him not to attend. She also seems to be trying to carve out a more independent public image for herself. Baby2Baby is a nice acknowledgement of her work, but many others before her have been honored at the gala – Kate Hudson, Drew Barrymore, etc. I don’t think Ben not being there is all that telling. They’re going to spend the holidays together yet again and then probably off to Montana yet again for winter break, etc. At some point, it just becomes obvious. I think they may be just sort of letting the public on to it through constantly doing these regular everyday things together vs. coming out with a big story that acknowledges it.

      • J says:

        @jojo I hear what you are saying about her carving out an independent image. But this is not a film premier. She was an honoree at a charity event. It seems to me, if he wanted to, he could have attended quietly. Ie not walk the carpet, just been inside at the gala and politely refused interviews. He did not.

      • JoJo says:

        @J – I understand that, but like I said before, Ben historically hasn’t attended these types of things with Jen anyway. Baby2Baby is just one example. He didn’t attend the Save the Children gala with her either. My guess is that she wanted to be there independently. I don’t think they’re ready to confirm things publicly for the same reason they probably haven’t put their rings back on. They’re not yet fully sure how things are going to play out, and why bring the world in on it only to endure even more scrutiny and pressure and bring more damage to their kids by going back and forth publicly – especially if it doesn’t ultimately work out. I don’t even think they’re a good couple – never have – but it seems pretty obvious to me they’re not divorcing.

      • J says:

        @jojo I hear what your saying – still think he should have been there – she was honored at this event – not a host.
        On the “are they or aren’t they” topic – ET came out with an article yesterday – alluding to just that – no new information – just a recap including all the “together” sightings. No gossip cop denial yet – which is interesting

      • JoJo says:

        @J – Yeah, I saw that. I feel like it’s pretty obvious at this point. And yes, Gossip Cop has gone completely dark, and I agree that’s interesting. I wish Gossip Cop would
        come out and even print something saying that they’re no longer hearing back from their regular sources. They have done that in the past on rare occasions. I really think they should. Otherwise, they just come across as an officia mouthpiece for celebs’ party line and only printing denials when and how celebs want,.

      • Diane says:

        @JoJo, awards season is coming up and it seems Ben’s hoping to have a dog in that fight. I think Ben’s proven he will use his family situation as a weapon in that fight. I would guess he is using his influence to shut down Gossip Cop posting any confirmations they are still divorcing and putting little bits out there to keep the pot of hope stirring for those holding out for reconciliation. He’ll keep up the good dad / good “estranged” husband through the spring, at least I would guess. Clearly, there is something in it for Jennifer to go along – maybe better financial settlement or just having him actually spending months of good time with the kids in the process or maybe he’s agreed to actually file in the spring so she can be free? Who knows. And yeah, his absolute silence, even on his Twitter, about Jen’s award is a pretty strong giveaway he doesn’t give two cares and they aren’t reconciled. Taker, not a giver.

      • JoJo says:

        @Diane – Yeah, but I find it nearly impossible to believe that Jen would spend this much time with him if she thought it was solely tied to ulterior motives on his part (his movie, etc.). I think she’s in this to win it – she wants to stay married to Ben. I also don’t really find his lack of commenting on her achievements to mean anything significant. He has never been very demonstrative or vocal in that way, so it doesn’t surprise me – regardless of all of our personal opinions of the way he “should” act. I mean, let’s face it. She said he’s the love of her life. He still lives on their property – maybe even in the same house at this point. They vacation together year-round and are seen together nearly every single day with the kids and sometimes without them. I don’t see a single sign that she plans to go through with the divorce.

      • J says:

        I really like her (I know on this site it’s almost illegal to say that :) ). And if she wants to be with him, and vice versa, I think that is great. I think jojo is right – we all have an opinion about how he should act – how we want him to act – to acknowledge her (which he did at the accountant red carpet). I doubt she feels the need for him to publically acknowledge her work – if they are in fact together – I’m sure a private acknowledgement works fine.
        I do think at some point down the line there has to be 1 of 3 things happening – 1. A divorce filing 2. One of them publically being with someone else or 3. Some sort of public acknowledgement that they have decided to stay together. It is almost 1.5 years since they announced the split – they had a fan base that declared “love is dead” when they announced a split . Yes a lot of people are tired of it – but it has to eventually resolve one way or another.

      • JoJo says:

        @J – Yeah, and if you believe they were already separated for months before they announced the split (which I do), then it has actually been nearly or more than 2 years (some outlets said they had been separated for 10 months already – who knows.) Lainey had a blind about Jen telling Ben she would never leave him, and this was after years of infidelity and divorce rumors, so I tend to believe that’s true, and it doesn’t look like anything much has changed since.

  13. Ana says:

    There is this guy who commented on her Capitol One commercial that if you looked closely, her eyes have deep sadness in them. He is big in the twitter world. Then, there is a nasty comment from a woman that JG is a manipulative, selfish, b***ch and that Ben owes her nothing. I went back but it disappeared. I was going to say that Ben is old enough to walk away and file for divorce himself. His career is successful enough that having a family doesn’t seem to matter to his fan base. But no matter what they have 3 kids between the 2 of them so they will be forever connected.

    I am glad she does good things.

    • Jessica says:

      I don’t think you have to look closely. She seems sad to me in some of the pics from the gala event this weekend, too.

      • Ana says:

        That guy who made that comment was a big sports guy. Guess, he was watching football but for a guy to comment such a thing was out of the very ordinary. It was a heartfelt comment.

        Ben should just file for divorce. They are just prolonging this. Live By Night will survive and will make money without the family pap walks. He has enough talent to survive and for her, she is strong enough to move on.

        Oh, she received a lot of hate comments on her FB for endorsing HRC.

      • Kayla says:

        After Live By Night opens, Ben doesn’t have anything on his schedule (other than Comic Con) until Justice League opens. Kinda wonder if that’s when they’ll file. And I agree, Jen seems to have lost a lot of her base fans (country people) over her public support of Clinton.

  14. hey-ya says:

    …Andrew Solomon said pretty much the same thing about people with depression years ago…basically a little help goes a long way…all the dresses are nice btw…I reckon both Kate & Jessica get through 200 designer dresses each year minimum…so they’re both probably beyond the stage of ” do I like this frock”….

  15. Diane says:

    I love that she brings attention to the plight of children in poverty. There is much to be done there.
    I don’t think they are together. She has been consistent they are co parenting, a very modern family and they have no choice but to be friends for the sake of the kids.
    She is supposedly going to film a movie in Canada early next year so it makes sense he is at the home so the kids routine is not disrupted by her absence. Until they are seriously involved with others and they are upfront with the kids about their relationship, it seems to work for them.
    I am most curious about the video of Jen last night coming out of a restaurant with Victor Garber and getting into an SUV with Matthew Broderick and Martin Short. She was carrying her little calendar journal. That’s really intriguing to me.

  16. mire usted! says:

    It’s true a little goes a long way. Lunch at daughter’s school cost $3.10. Imagine if these celebrities sold these outrageously expensive dresses and gave the money to the poor?

    • Diane says:

      I loved that Princess Diana used to auction her dresses for charity.

    • blue banana says:

      sigh. you could say that about anything- imagine if we all took the money we used to buy these computers and gave it to the poor!! Or did you decide for Jen that her fancy dress is frivolous spending but your computer is not?

      • ScotiaGirl says:

        Right On Blue Banana, how quick we judge without examining our own sins! We ALL could do without alot to give to others more needy not just celebrities, so before casting stones, better check the coverage on our own glass houses! Good point! Right on the Money!

        Same thing when people post why do they go to Starbucks can’t they afford a coffee maker at home. Really? Don’t we all have coffee makers at home or the ability to buy one? Are they suppose to hole up in their home 24/7 and keep their kids under lock and key? Really? They go out the same reason you and I do. I suspect that they drop the girls off at school and then have time to kill before Sam goes to preschool so they do this. Are they committing a crime? No one says you have to look at the daily pictures of them going to Starbucks and noone can make you look at them either if you don’t really want to unless there is someone holding a gun to your head. It amazes me how many people complain about the pap walks and daily pictures yet they open up the post and take the time to bitch INSTEAD of just scrolling past the post. Pretty safe to say they just want to BITCH about anything and everything these two do. They cannot win and cannot please everyone.

      • ana says:

        I so agree with you Scotia. If I had the money just like them, I would do the same thing. It is nice to be outside having coffee.

      • mire usted! says:

        @blue banana “To whom much is given, much is required.” Comparing volunteer work and charity of the working middle class to these celebrities is ridiculous. These women are multimillionaires! They should have a greater responsibility than working middle class people such as myself. Fortunately Princess Diana, Jane Fonda and others agree. These celebrities are hypocrites. To suggest there aren’t receiving financial benefits from the publicity from showing up to events is untrue and very naive. They exploit the poor to build a brand and image for selling movies. Though I don’t own such extravangant dresses to auction off, I volunteer at a soup kitchen along with my two daughters.

      • ScotiaGirl says:

        You think Princess Diana and Jane Fonda did not gain something from their charity work. It won them over to you didn’t it. Same Thing; it cast them in a good light and won them fans and recognition. No different. She could be doing nothing but living off her riches and you would then complain that she did nothing to give back. See what I mean – she can’t win. There’s always going to be someone to pick something apart and pull the negative card.

        People are actually complaining here about people doing charity work albeit for whatever reasons, the charity is still getting something out of it rather than nothing at all. Society is so ready today to just look for some reason, any reason, to rip people apart instead of finding something positive to reflect on. Its pretty sad when everything gets analyzed to death and the focus is always on the negative not the positive. A box of diapers to a needy mother is a tangible cost, her sponsorship to get that box of diapers maybe won her some new fans – the cost of obtaining her fans in this transaction zero. The charity is gaining from this collaboration too and benefits in a more measurable way. Something is better than nothing.

  17. MAC says:

    Thanks for going back to dresses
    :)

  18. mire usted! says:

    @ScotiaGirl You failed to read my posts correctly. I never complained about her giving to the poor. I wholeheartedly encourage her to give to charities after all she’s a mulitmillionaire. I’m pointing out the hypocrisy in going to these self-serving charity events in which she sells her brand as the caring mother to her minivan audience she has developed through strategic PR work. She can give without exploiting the poor at publicity benefits.

    And then there’s the weekly church pap walks. It’s about developing an image and a lot of the public recognize it. That’s why Bennifer 2 gets such a viterol response from the public. Where are Ryan and Blake’s daily pap walks with their children? Somehow they manage to get a cup of coffee without being papped daily. It’s a choice. Bennifer 2 attack the intelligence of the American public daily and people respond.

  19. Kate says:

    Ben was at the premiere of Casey’s new movie last night, smiling from ear to ear with Casey and Matt Damon. He looks truly happy to be there to support his brother who will most certainly get an Oscar nomination. He has never gone to Jen’s premieres even during the early years if their marriage, he just never supported her, that was probably one of the reasons they had problems, aside of course from cheating and being an absent father. It perplexes me why get papped only to deliberately look disgusted with each other, what exactly is the point? What does this accomplish? Ben looks like he wants to die when he’s with and she doesn’t look happy either. It must be hard for Ben to live a lie, he’s just too much of a p@ssy to do anything about it.