Princess Charlene of Monaco kicked off a visit to India today with visits to various communities in India, including an engagement where she met and interacted with HIV-afflicted children.
The Monegasque royal’s day began with a visit to a marginalised family in the remote village of Panniyamalai. She paid a house call to Bakiam and his wife, Pushpam and their four children. Bakiam struggles with chronic illness, which makes it hard for him to find work, and thus the family is struggling with poverty.
Princess Charlene met with the family and promised to help them and offered the son a cricket bat.
Princess Charlene then paid a visit to the village Nochiodaipatti in Madurai, where she met with HIV-afflicted children.
The event took place at a private college, and Princess Charlene was greeted with bouquets and garlands, and a floral crown. She took part in a silent prayer in homage to Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, played with the children, and watched a cultural programme.
The artists and children present performed a skit about AIDS awareness before Princess Charlene left for her next engagement in Dindigul for a charity event.
Princess Charlene is in India to attend the Laureates and Leaders for Children Summit 2016 in New Delhi. Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands is also attending the summit, which takes place at the Rashtrapati Bhavan Presidential Residence.
Princess Charlene spoke at the event, saying, “We should bear in mind that children have a right to be heard and a right to participate in decisions that affect them. We should invest in children, allow them to speak and equip then with the knowledge and understanding of their rights.”
“There is a need for the world leaders to come together, the foundations and organisations fighting for children rights must come together. Tomorrow is a promise, we have to act today, act now.”