Caroline of Monaco, Patroness and Protector of the Children

  December 13, 2010 at 11:07 pm by

Princess Caroline of Monaco is well known for her strong sense of independence. Even the young wife of Monsieur Junot was no pushover. As Madame Stefano Casiraghi, she might have been uncharacteristically willing to give up a little of her independence (because that is the effect of true love) but by then her media image as born-again, indomitable “First Lady of Monaco” was too forceful. It was Stefano, in fact, who had to deal with being Monsieur “Carolino” — not an easy thing for a young man, not 30 years old, wholly unaccustomed to the prevalence of royal grandeur over individual merit. Thus, Stefano raced around, founding companies and claiming sporting titles, determined to set an example for his children.

View the image at Hola!

The children were the uniting force, the reason to keep the ship afloat and stay the course. After Stefano died, Caroline might have let herself die too — not literally, but in her heart — but she had her children. Her children saved her life. Her children brought her back to life. And could Caroline ever forget what her children and her family life did for her soul?

In April 1993, Princess Caroline assumed the presidency of AMADE, which stands for the Association Mondiale des Amis d’Enfance, or in English: The World Association for Children’s Friends. Princess Grace, her mother, established “AMADE Mondiale” in 1963, so Caroline assumed leadership of the organization in its 30th year. She traveled the world over, paying visits to AMADE’s projects in Africa and the Far East, and she saw that there were children being tortured, children torn from their homes, children left to die from illness and indignities of every kind. Her own life was rejuvenated by the sweetness of the child’s voice, the gentleness of the child’s touch! How to pay that forward, to spread that magic? One day, one gesture, one hug at a time?

It was a Monday night, in Versailles quite cold to judge by the thickness of the fur that the Princess wore over her gala dress. The occasion was the 18th edition of Le Nuit de l’Enfance, or in English: The Night for Children. It was a black-tie occasion for raising funds for Anne-Aymone Giscard d’Estaing’s Foundation for Children, and set in the magnificent Palais de Versailles, in which every window was full of light. The media host Stephane Bern, expert of “Les Gotha” (royalty and nobility) and particular admirer of the Grimaldi dynasty, acted as Maître de Cérémonie.

The Princess had a good reason for her abundance of smiles amid the politicians who attended her during the evening. Her daughter Charlotte Casiraghi’s Pro-Am Cup, two days before, had raised more than half-a-million euros of AMADE Mondiale. It was indeed a good night for the children!

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