UAE: Eva Longoria talks Desperate Housewives, motherhood and Global Gift Gala

Actress was at the charity event in Abu Dhabi


Ambica Sachin

Published: Fri 10 Dec 2021, 8:36 AM

Last updated: Fri 10 Dec 2021, 10:34 AM

She will forever be Gabrielle Solis, one among the Desperate Housewives brigade that got a generation obsessing over neighbourhoods and what constitutes a good neighbour. But over the years Eva Longoria has used the global appeal of her television role to catapult herself into doing good for society and the world at large.

In her capacity as honorary chair at the Global Gift Foundation founded by Maria Bravo, the actress and philanthropist is currently in the UAE.

While the star-studded Global Gift Gala took place at the W Abu Dhabi, Yas Island on Thursday evening änd raised over USD1 million, with proceeds benefitting the Lebanese Red Cross, a humanitarian organisation, and an auxiliary team to the medical service of the Lebanese Army and the Global Gift Foundation, we caught up with the glam woman herself.

“The UAE holds a very special place in my heart as that is where I got engaged to my husband Pepe,” she admitted to us.

As part of the Global Citizen Forum she is also excited to be in Dubai. Charity galas are as much about the glamour as they are about philanthropy.

For Eva Longoria, of course, being in the limelight is as easy as turning up for an event looking her stunning best.

“I love dressing up, who wouldn’t,” she admits. And adds that “the positive action that can be taken from walking the red carpet shouldn’t be underestimated.”

Being a part of Hollywood for so long she also knows how the industry works.

“I know that when the images go around the world, those reading the articles will not only see a red carpet image, they will also read about the impactful work of the foundations and charities we are highlighting.”

Excerpts from an interview.

You have been involved with the Global Gift Gala for many years now. Do you believe the concept of philanthropy is more accepted now than before?

Yes, I think when we started the Global Gift Gala, philanthropy was a bit of an anomaly and people didn’t realise we can all be philanthropic in our actions. Now it seems that we are far more accepting of paying it forward and doing good which can only be a good thing and means we are all doing more for one another in our own way.

You identify yourself as an Actress, Producer, Director, Activist, Philanthropist, Designer, Mom, Wife, Daughter, Sister, Aunt, Friend, Stepmom, Human on your Insta. Which of these roles is most close to your heart?

I am happy to say that I am truly all those things, which I have listed. I daily call upon all those attributes to live my life to the fullest. Being a mom will always be closest to my heart though.

We recently saw you making Flamin Hot Cheetos Elote which looked yum! Did the pandemic and the stay home initiative help hone your skills in the kitchen?

I love cooking and entertaining so when the pandemic happened I had to entertain those closest to me and so cooked up a storm when I could and learned new culinary skills and also some strange combinations too! It was a time to experiment in the kitchen with no judgement and I loved it.

To a lot of people, you are still Gabby from Desperate Housewives! This is one character that doesn’t seem to leave you. Has that ever got too much for you?

Gabby is a character who I will never tire of. If it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t have the platform to do what I do now, so I am forever grateful for her appeal worldwide.

You recently said you’d be the first to sign up for a Desperate Housewives revival. What was it about Gabby that made her such a loved household figure?

Gaby was a guilty pleasure for so many people, as she was flawed and funny and such a well-written character. People loved the show and the combination of all the women together made us all household names.

Why according to you is the concept of charity more significant in today’s world than ever before?

During the past few years we have all had to come together and support each other. Charities more than ever need the support of kind donations due to the fact that the impact of the pandemic has affected everyone. I think people have seen that a small act of kindness can have a very large impact on the worlds of others and its significance is getting more and more important whether that’s in education, environment or empowerment.

The Global Gift Gala this time joined forces with Abu Dhabi Dream Ball, the initiative of a group of women who aim to promote voluntarism. Tell us more about it.

When I was asked to come to Abu Dhabi for the Dream Ball, Maria Bravo and I both agreed this was a very impactful thing to do. The women we are joining forces with all have one goal and that is to create awareness and encourage those around us to do more and support each other.

The pandemic forced many of us to spend more time with ourselves and our loved ones. What was the biggest takeaway from that time away from the limelight for you?

I found the pandemic was a time for family and I loved it and also it was great to be with my son daily and see him grow and have such great quality time. My biggest takeaway is to never take anything for granted and that family is home.

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