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When she’s not busy leaving us on the edge of our seats every Thursday, How To Get Away With Murder star Viola Davis has kept much of her personal life under wraps…Until now.

In the April issue of Glamour magazine (on stands March 17) Shondaland’s newest leading lady opens up about her difficult upbringing in Rhode Island, where her family often struggled to make ends meet, leaving them without a sufficient amount of food.

“I was always so hungry and ashamed, I couldn’t tap into my potential. I couldn’t get at the business of being me,” Viola said.

However, Davis’ struggle with childhood hunger has inspired her to give back in a major way. She recently helped raise $4.5 million dollars for Hunger Is, a new campaign by the Safeway Foundation and The Entertainment Industry Foundation.

“This is the richest country in the world. There’s no reason kids should be going to school hungry. Food is something that everyone should have. It just is.”

And in addition to purpose, dealing with hunger also taught her how to bounce back from adversity.

“One thing that is missing from the vision boards is what happens when you don’t get what you want. Your ability to adapt to failure, and navigate your way out of it, absolutely 100 percent makes you who you are,” she said.

As a two-time Oscar nominee, Davis clearly knows a thing or two about snapping back from the struggle. She shares the importance of strength with her daughter daily.

“I tell my daughter every morning, ‘Now, what are the two most important parts of you?’ And she says, ‘My head and my heart.’ Because that’s what I’ve learned in the foxhole: What gets you through life is strength of character and strength of spirit and love.”

To read more of Viola Davis’ interview with Glamour, click here.


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