Film moves Winslet to start charity
Published 22/09/2010 | 20:03
Kate Winslet has founded a charity to help people with autism after a conversation with her daughter made her realise the daily difficulties they face.
The Oscar-winning actress narrated the documentary A Mother's Courage: Talking Back to Autism which tells of an Icelandic mother's fight to find a way for her non-verbal 10-year-old son to communicate.
Winslet founded The Golden Hat Foundation after watching the film with her nine-year-old daughter Mia.
"After watching the film A Mother's Courage with my daughter one day, she turned to me and asked, 'What if I wasn't able to talk to you mummy?'," she said.
"As I thought about what that meant, for a mother not to be able to talk with her own child, I realised that I had to lend my voice to raise awareness of this rapidly increasing disorder."
The non-profit organisation, named after a poem by Keli Thorsteinsson - the young boy featured in the film, will aim to eliminate barriers for people with autism around the world.
It plans to establish innovative living communities that offer the opportunity to learn to communicate effectively, education, job training and recreational activities, within a supportive social network.
The foundation is partnered with Virgin Unite, the non-profit foundation of Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Group, and donations can be made online at www.goldenhatfoundation.org or www.virginunite.com/goldenhat.
Winslet, who last year won the best actress Oscar for The Reader, has two children, daughter Mia and son Joe.