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World Childhood Foundation USA
Princess Madeleine of Sweden with husband Chris O'Neill. Photo by: Sarah Merians Photography

Princess Madeleine of Sweden with husband Chris O'Neill
Photo by: Sarah Merians Photography

World Childhood Foundation USA
on Path to Raise $1 Million at its 2023 Gala
to Help Fight Child Sexual Exploitation and Abuse


H.M. Queen Silvia of Sweden and H.R.H. Princess Madeleine of Sweden hosted the event, which honored Hans Vestberg, Chairman & CEO, Verizon; Jennifer Wortham, Chair, Global Collaborative;
and Daniela Ligiero, CEO, Together for Girls, Co-Founder,
The Brave Movement

World Childhood Foundation USA (Childhood USA), one of the country’s leading non-profits in the fight against child sexual exploitation and abuse, held its 2023 Gala on October 16th. The Gala is on path to raise more than $1 million in support of its mission to inspire, promote, and develop solutions to end sexual abuse, exploitation and violence against children.


The Gala, which took place at 583 Park Avenue, was a night dedicated to raising awareness and resources for the Foundation's mission. The event was hosted by H.M. Queen Silvia of Sweden and H.R.H Princess Madeleine of Sweden, and attended by luminaries in the corporate and philanthropic worlds. Grammy-nominated singer and songwriter Natasha Bedingfield gave an exclusive performance for the attendees. 


Hans Vestberg, Chairman & CEO of Verizon; Jennifer Wortham, Chair of the Global Collaborative; and Daniela Ligiero, CEO of Together for Girls and Go-Founder of The Brave Movement, were each presented with the Childhood USA Champion Award, recognizing their remarkable contributions helping to safeguard and support the most vulnerable in our society. 


H.M. Queen Silvia of Sweden, said, “Everyone in this room tonight is here to advance dignity for children in distress, and to build pathways to a brighter future. Make no mistake, this is a problem we can actually do something about. We must raise awareness, continue to pioneer meaningful programs, develop innovative technologies and push for legislation to protect children.”


The World Childhood Foundation wishes to express profound gratitude to the following sponsors, whose generosity played a pivotal role in the event's success, including Verizon, Like Nastya, Joanna Heimbold, and the Inner Foundation. 


“The Childhood USA Gala is a vital fundraiser for our organization, and we are profoundly thankful to all of our supporters,” said Mary L. Pulido, Ph.D., Childhood USA’s newly named Executive Director. “The funds raised will make a tangible difference in our ability to create a world where all children can grow up safe and secure. The unwavering and generous support of individuals, organizations, and our founder H.M. Queen Silvia propels us forward on our mission.” 


The funds raised at the gala will be channeled directly into programs that address the root causes of child sexual abuse and exploitation, providing children with the protection and opportunities they deserve.


Earlier on Monday, H.M. Queen Silvia spoke at the United Nations on behalf of the World Childhood Foundation at a high-level meeting titled, “Placing Child Protection at the Core of Sustainable Travel and Tourism.” The event was held together with the Swedish Mission to the UN and the Office of the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General on Violence Against Children, and convened leaders from governments, academia, civil society and the private sector. Many child protection challenges emerge in the context of travel and tourism. Children are victims of child labor, sexual exploitation and trafficking, among other forms of violence and harm. As the ongoing increase in the number of travelers worldwide coincides with an increase in children’s vulnerability to violence for diverse reasons, urgent action is needed. This high-level meeting helped to rethink travel and tourism to ensure that child protection is at the core of making the sector truly sustainable. 


For more information about the World Childhood Foundation and to learn how you can contribute to the cause,
please visit 


About Childhood USA 

For over 20 years World Childhood Foundation USA’s mission, founded by Her Majesty Queen Silvia of Sweden, has been to inspire, promote, and develop solutions to end sexual abuse, exploitation, and violence against children. A United Nations accredited NGO, Childhood USA has served over 90,000 children and their families in the United States – both directly and indirectly – through innovative and grassroots programmatic support, global/US  advocacy initiatives, such as The Out of the Shadows Index; a benchmarking study on prevention of and response to CSEA,  and high-level meetings with government, academic, civil society, and private sector leaders. 


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