On Thursday of this week, Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Katherine visited the Belgrade homes for children without parental care and delivered toys, clothes and shoes to the children.
“The most beautiful way to spend holidays is to be among these lovely children. I am proud of the work of Lifeline Chicago Humanitarian Organisation, thanks to them and my Foundation we have managed to provide help to these homes and make children’s holidays and everyday life more joyful. We expect children without parental care to attend the traditional Christmas receptions, which every year I host with my husband, Crown Prince Alexander at the White Palace, and we will also visit children in Belgrade hospitals”, said Crown Princess Katherine.
According to government data, nearly 80 percent of children in institutions in Serbia in 2014 had disabilities, “up from 62.5 percent in 2012.” Once put into care, many children remain institutionalised the rest of their lives. Separated from their families and stranded with limited opportunities for human interaction, they are vulnerable to “stunted physical, emotional, and intellectual development”—further limiting their right to a decent, dignified human life.
To have this visit from a prominent royal, means much to the children.
The Serbian royal couple has, for many years, been working to improve the situation of people who have a difficult time. The couple were in London at the start of February for another fundraiser. On that occasion, they participated in a charity cocktail and auction at the University Women’s Club in London to raise funds and awareness for the treatment of children with disabilities in Serbia. They also participated in a charity event in London in March; then, to raise money for a new ambulance to a Serbian hospital.
In 1993, Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Katherine founded the Lifeline Humanitarian Organisation which currently has offices in Chicago, New York, Toronto, London and Athens. This organisation, together with the HRH Crown Princess Katherine Foundation, works to collect money for medical equipment that has been delivered to numerous hospitals in Serbia.
If you want to read more about the HRH Crown Princess Katherine Foundation and the Lifeline Humanitarian Organisation, you can do so here.