HRH Crown Princess Katherine’s Foundation, in cooperation with the Lifeline Humanitarian Organization of Chicago, which works under the patronage of Her Royal Highness, has been selflessly helping children for more than 20 years, and this tradition has continued this year as well. More than 1,000 children from Serbia and the Republic of Srpska were delighted with presents for Serbian Orthodox Christmas, that brought sincere smiles to the faces of our youngest, bringing them the spirit and the joy of the holiday.
It is extremely important to HRH Crown Princess Katherine that children always feel loved and safe, and that they can rely on those who selflessly care for them at all times. The Lifeline Humanitarian Organization of Chicago traditionally gathers donations to purchase gifts for children for the Christmas holidays, which are distributed to children every year.
Gifts, including clothes, shoes, toys, hygiene products and school supplies, sweets, and snacks, arrived at 16 homes for children without parental care, 3 day-care centers for children with special needs, 3 educational institutions, and 4 shelters for women in Belgrade, Pancevo, Kragujevac, Sombor, Subotica, Novi Sad, Aleksinac, Bela Crkva, Trstenik, Kosovo and Metohija, Banja Luka, Bijeljina, and Milino Selo. We are especially glad that the packages will also be received by children from Serbian families in Kosovo and Metohija. In addition to the packages, Lifeline Chicago and the Crown Princess Katherine Foundation in Belgrade also organized the delivery of food for Christmas dinner for children in 13 orphanages, so that the youngest could enjoy a nice holiday meal. Food packages for the socially endangered arrived in more than 100 families from Milino Selo, Banja Luka and Kosovo and Metohija.
This year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the jubilee 20th reception for children at the White Palace could not be organized, which is an event that HRH Crown Prince Alexander and HRH Crown Princess Katherine began immediately after returning to their homeland in 2001. Their Royal Highnesses are especially happy with these receptions, because then they spend time in the company of the children and personally give them gifts. Although the receptions were absent, what is important is that thanks to the work of the Crown Princess Katherine Foundation and the Lifeline Humanitarian Organization of Chicago, the gifts arrived where they should, to bring joy into the lives of children.
“What can especially brighten our day, and the whole world, is the smile of a child. And just imagine what the world is like when more than 1,000 children smile at once. That amount of love is what makes the world a better place. That is why our life goal is to make for these small, but still so big people, at least one day in their lives better and to show them that someone cares about them. Their smile gives us the strength to persevere and continue with our life commitment, and that is caring for others – because there is no greater happiness than knowing that you have done something good.
I am grateful to everyone who helped, and especially to our wonderful donors from Chicago, that thanks to our joint efforts and despite all the difficulties, this year as well, we managed to make the little ones happy during these holidays. It is very important that children can see and feel that someone cares for them and loves them. What is just a small sign of attention for someone, means so much to these beautiful children,” said HRH Crown Princess Katherine.
Their Royal Highnesses Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine hope that the pandemic will end soon, and that next year they will be able to gather the children at the Palace again and enjoy their company and love.
In addition to the benefactors of Lifeline Humanitarian Organization of Chicago, donors which generously supported this project, and to whom we are most sincerely grateful are: Lifeline Humanitarian Organization of New York, the following Embassies of the foreign countries in the Republic of Serbia: European Union delegation, Russia, United States of America, Australia, Japan, Italy, Czech Republic, Kuwait, Croatia, Finland, Angola, and Myanmar, and the companies: Coca Cola, Nestle, Marbo Product ltd, Jaffa, Zito promet, Put Inzenjering and Olimpias Knitting Serbia ltd: British International School in Belgrade, the First Russian International School “Valentina Tereshkova” in Belgrade, the German school in Belgrade, and Mrs. Mikell Reed Carroll.