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Power of Women, Variety Magazine


A handful of Hollywood's biggest names are getting recognized in a great way.

In its 2015 Power of Women New York issue, Variety highlights five women in the industry who are using their clout to bring attention to worthy causes that they feel passionate about. So who are the wonderful ladies featured in the mag's special issue?

Oh, you know, just Kim Kardashian, Lena Dunham, Whoopi Goldberg, Rachel Weisz and Glenn Close. NBD.

Each star has used their fame to bring attention to something that is near and dear to their hearts, and they all talked to the mag about their efforts and why they chose to dedicate their time and energy to the specific cause.

Get a sneak peek at their cover shots and what they're passionate about below:

Kim Kardashian, Variety Magazine

Williams+Hirakawa for Variety

After losing her father Robert Kardashian to cancer in 2003, the E! star has played an active role at the Children's Hospital Los Angeles, visiting young patients and attempting to brighten their time at the hospital as much as she can.

"My father passed away from cancer," she tells Variety. "I remember what it was like when my dad was going through it. You see the kids that are so strong. They feel so helpless. You want to do anything to help them."

The article goes on to state that on some of these visits, Kim will sit at the patient's bedside alone. Other times, she'll bring along her famous hubby, Kanye West, or her sisters, and will even come with little gifts like iTunes gift cards or beauty products. "We'll sit and paint our nails together," she says.

Lena Dunham, Variety Magazine

Billy Kidd for Variety

Although the Girls star wasn't aware of the disturbing truths revolving around sex-trafficking until recently, Dunham didn't waste any time getting involved with a non-profit that helps victims of commercial sexual exploitation in New York.

"What attracted me so much to the cause is that I'm a feminist and I'm a sexual assault survivor," she explains. "I felt that it was important to me to not just call attention to the circumstances (around) which I was assaulted on a college campus, but also to call attention to sexual-abuse survivors who have far less of a public voice."

Rachel Weisz, Variety Magazine

Billy Kidd for Variety

Education is at the top of Weisz's list of important causes, and the actress is well aware that there are many people who cannot afford going to college. She wanted to help and change that, so the brunette beauty teamed up with the Opportunity Network.

Starting as young as age 13, kids in the New York City area can get aid with internships, preparation for interviews and college application tutors through this organization, which was founded in 2003.

"Some of these kids don't even have the $150 for the application fee, so we help with that," says Weisz. "We drive them to colleges for student days, help with many life skills. All the things I kind of take for granted."

Whoopi Godlberg, Variety Magazine

Billy Kidd for Variety

Whoopi never ended up being part of the Ice Capades, like she dreamed of as a little girl, but now she tries to help make that dream a closer reality for other young aspiring skaters.

Goldberg is now an honorary chair of Figure Skating in Harlem, a nonprofit that helps young girls learn leadership and academic skills through the sport. Roughly 250 girls between the ages of 6 and 18 are annually enrolled in after-school and summer programs.

"Anytime someone is passionate about something, I feel like you have to encourage that," Goldberg says.

Glenn Close, Variety Magazine

Billy Kidd for Variety

Close was determined to learn more about mental illness and the stigma surrounding it after doctors diagnosed her sister, Jessie Close, with bipolar disorder and her son, Calen Pick, schizoaffective disorde.

The actress started volunteering at the New York recovery center Fountain House, and in 2010 started the nonprofit Bring Change 2 Mind to raise awareness.

"We thought the best thing to do was work against the stigma that surrounds mental illness," Close says, noting that one in four people are affected by it. "It's a chronic illness like anything else."

You can read more in the April 21 issue of Variety.