Orange Is The New Black’s Alysia Reiner, who plays Natalie “Fig” Figuaroa, took researching her character a step further. In an exclusive interview with Reiner, Danity Donnaly chats about Reiner’s experience with the Women’s Prison Association and why she thinks second chances are so important.
In case you missed Part I of our interview with Alysia Reiner, check it out here.
DD: Alysia, while researching this role of sexy, tough as nails warden Fig, you found a way to turn this moment into something charitable.
AR: Well, particularly playing Fig, who is not the kind of woman who does these kinds of things, I personally really wanted to do something by taking this subject matter and then the truth of some people’s lives and our successes based on some other people’s pain and bring it to light. So the truth of it, if you really think about it, and hopefully our job as artists is to take the insight of that pain and compassion and hopefully inspire others to help change our prison systems. But, I personally felt the need to think how much can I do and I started working with the Women’s Prison Association, who does amazing work and I’ve a lot of volunteer work with them. I worked with a designer and we designed a locket and I was so excited that we were able to give 100% of the proceeds to the Women’s Prison Association. We raised a lot of money doing that and it is a really, really rewarding thing.
And with the Women’s Prison Association and Orange Is The New Black collaboration, second chances are a big deal!
Reiner has donated a lot of money and her time to the Women’s Prison Association and the #2ndChances Campaign.
According to a press release,
We’ve all been given a second chance – at life, at love… a chance to change direction, to learn a new way, or to right a wrong. WPA’s 2nd Chances Campaign seeks to highlight this shared experience and bring attention to our work to support justice-involved women and their families. The campaign aims to entertain, educate, and inspire action.
Running from May through September of 2014, the campaign features a video series of personal second chance stories shared by women at WPA, staff, community members and celebrities. Using social media, the campaign will invite the public to share their own second chance stories by uploading their videos to the campaign’s website www.2ndchancescampaign.org.
The campaign invites opportunities to support WPA programs through donations and an exciting series of Charity Buzz auctions and high-value raffles including lunch with Piper Kerman and Taylor Schilling. We invite you to join the conversation and share your second chance stories with us.
How cool would those opportunities be?
The limited edition locket that Alysia collaborated with KiraKira for charity is available for purchase here. It is available in gold or silver (I’ll take the silver, please!) and is emblazoned with the WPA motto on the back, “Empower. Strengthen. Connect.” All proceeds will go to the Women’s Prison Association!
Follow Alysia Reiner on Twitter here.
Photo by: Josh Merwin/Creative Culture-ID