NEW YORK, Oct. 10, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Starlet Demi Moore and Philanthropist Arden Wohl will co-host the GEMS Benefit Gala on October 17th, 2012 at El Museo del Barrio in New York City. The gala will honor Girls Educational and Mentoring Services, GEMS, the largest service provider to commercially sexually exploited and domestically trafficked girls and young women in the US. One hundred percent of the proceeds of this event will go to GEMS critical services for victims and survivors, ages 12 -24, of commercial sexual exploitation and domestic trafficking.
Hosts Demi Moore and Arden Wohl will kick-off a star-studded dramatic reading of excerpts from "Girls Like Us," the critically acclaimed memoir by GEMS Founder and Executive Director Rachel Lloyd. Participants in the event include: Jada Pinkett Smith., Yolanda Ross, Natasha Lyonne, Roz Coleman, Jamie Hector, Adepero Oduye, Shontelle and India Arie.
As a survivor of commercial sexual exploitation herself, Rachel's groundbreaking book shares not only her own story of triumphing over abuse but most importantly the stories and experiences of the girls served by GEMS and sheds light on the realities of domestic sex trafficking in the US today. Elle magazine said of Girls Like Us "Riveting. . . . [Lloyd's] passionate, persuasive arguments for recognition and protection give a voice to the thousands of girls all around us who work and suffer in near invisibility". It's with the goal of raising both critical funds to support GEMS work and increasing the visibility of exploited girls and young women that GEMS is proud to present celebrity readings from Girls Like Us.
As the only non-profit in New York specifically created to serve girls and young women in the commercial sex industry, GEMS serves nearly 350 girls and young women each year through an array of services including counseling, crisis care, housing, educational support, employment and youth leadership training. GEMS is committed to ending commercial sexual exploitation and domestic trafficking of children by changing individual lives, transforming public perception, and revolutionizing the systems and policies that impact sexually exploited youth.