King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima of the Netherlands have spent the day doing volunteer work at a retirement home. Their volunteer work was part of the national volunteer action “NLdoet” which takes place each year.
On Saturday morning, King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima arrived at ‘t Hofland, a former retirement home in Pijnacker. Each year the national volunteer action “NLdoet” is organised in the Netherlands, a weekend on which many people do volunteer work in their neighbourhood. The King and Queen and other members of the Dutch Royal family participate each year.
One year ago, young status holders and starters moved in ‘t Hofland. These young people decided to start a project with the aim to reduce the gap between young and older people. They organised a lunch for seniors and played old Dutch games with them. As a surprise, the King and Queen showed up to help them out.
King Willem-Alexander made pancakes while Queen Máxima prepared some sandwiches. The Royal couple was in high spirits as they served their homemade pancakes and sandwiches. The King and Queen started a competition on who could hand out their food the first. When Queen Máxima served one of her sandwiches, the King took away the plate and said: “No you wanted a pancake, right? They’re much better.”
One of the seniors didn’t believe that it was indeed the King who came out to help. King Willem-Alexander reacted: “When I looked in the mirror this morning, it was me.”
The King and Queen also took the time to talk to the seniors, and they joined in playing the games. King Willem-Alexander hugged some people and laughs were all around. The Queen said: “You can help each other and show the way in the society.”
After their visit, the King and Queen of the Netherlands took the time to talk to the assembled press. When asked who was the best at making pancakes, the Queen laughingly said: “Shall we give the honour to my husband?”
Willem-Alexander and Máxima also shared the news that their three daughters, the Princesses Amalia, Alexia and Ariane will join their parents in the future during the national volunteer day. Maxima said: “Today they had work to do at school, but they definitely want to participate.”
King Willem-Alexander’s mother, Princess Beatrix, volunteered at a daycare where she helped to clean the play space.
Prince Bernhard, Princess Annette and Prince Pieter-Christiaan also worked for “NLdoet” today.