Fighting For Change
Born and raised in New York City, Rosario Dawson got her first movie role at 15 years old when a director spotted her sitting on her front stoop. Her debut was in the movie Kids, she played a promiscuous teenager in a shocking drama about out of control teenagers in 1995. Since then her acting resume has impressively grown.
The actress mother, Isabel Celeste, a single mother of Afro-Cuban and Puerto Rican descent was just 16 when she gave birth to Rosario. Dawson took the surname of her stepfather at the age of one. At six years old and her brother aged one, the family moved into an abandoned building located on Mahattan's lower eastside among squatters. There was no water heater or electricity. The family put in their own plumbing and power supply.
Other than being an accomplished actress, Rosario is well known for her involvement in activism. Her first role into social causes started at the age of 10, when she campaigned to save trees. Growing up she was strongly influenced by family members, some of whom were transgender and HIV positive. She witnessed her grandmother and mother marching for social justice.
Dawson calls herself an actrovist. Over the years, she has used her fame to support numerous causes. She co-founded the nonprofit Voto Latino, to encourage Latinos to be the vehicle of change. She has also been active with Doctors Without Borders and The Nature Conservancy. There's her alignment with New York City’s Lower East Side Girls Club. In addition, she has voluntered and financially supported Violence against Women, Amnesty International, Oxfam, the International Rescue Committee, Global Cool, and Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, among others.
It seems Rosario's passion and involvement in social, environmental and civil rights issues will continue. Luckily, for these social causes, having Rosario as a benefactor will certainly help in bringing their issues to the forefront.
Rosario Dawson's quote:
"You only live once. You don't want your tombstone to read: 'Played it Safe."