Allstate Foundation Purple Purse has announced Serena Williams, tennis champion, entrepreneur and philanthropist, will serve as the program’s new ambassador.

In her role, Williams will raise awareness of the often invisible role financial abuse plays in keeping women trapped in abusive relationships and urge the public to help break the cycle of domestic violence.

One in four American women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime. While most people think only of cuts and bruises when they think of domestic violence, 99 percent of all domestic violence cases involve financial abuse. Financial abuse can include abusers preventing victims from accessing money, ruining their credit and harassing them at work so they lose their jobs.

“Standing up for women’s rights has long been a passion of mine,” said Williams. “I am honored to join Allstate Foundation Purple Purse to bring financial abuse and domestic violence out of the shadows and into the public conversation. I hope people will join the Purple Purse movement and work with us to end abuse against women.”

Nearly eight in 10 Americans (78 percent) are unaware that financial abuse is a form of domestic violence. To address this lack of awareness, The Allstate Foundation is launching a new social experiment-based short film, “Lost Purse.”

The film provides a glimpse into the life of a domestic violence victim through her lost purse. It shines a light on the role financial abuse plays in keeping women trapped in domestic violence situations and explores how people react when faced with an opportunity to help a victim.

“Our purpose at Allstate is to help people live their best lives, and that means continuing to raise awareness of domestic violence and empowering survivors to regain their financial independence,” said Vicky Dinges, Allstate’s senior vice president of corporate responsibility. “We are thrilled to welcome Serena, a longtime advocate and role model for so many, to the Purple Purse family. Her voice will bring new audiences into this critical conversation. Domestic violence won’t go away on its own. We need everyone’s voices – men’s and women’s – to stand up to abusers and speak on behalf of victims because no woman deserves to live in fear.”

Since 2005, Allstate Foundation Purple Purse has propelled more than 1 million survivors on the road to safety and security through its educational resources, including The Allstate Foundation Purple Purse Moving Ahead curriculum, which equips survivors with the knowledge and tools to recover from financial abuse.

To date, The Allstate Foundation has invested more than $55 million to educate the public about financial abuse and to provide critical survivor services, including financial education, asset-building, job training and readiness programs.

Visit PurplePurse.com to learn more about domestic violence and financial abuse. Join The Allstate Foundation Purple Purse movement to empower more survivors to break free and stay free from violence.

If you or someone you know is in a domestic violence situation, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or TTY 1-800-787-3224.

View “Lost Purse” film here.

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