The Royal Family and Charities
The British Royal Family have a long standing relationship with charitable organisations, with members of the Royal Family dedicating their time and efforts to supporting different charities. It is believed that the Royal Family have been contributing to charitable organisations since the 18th century, and their formal patronages go from strength to strength each year. The female members of the Royal Family in particular are noted for their outstanding contributions, and their selfless acts to help those in need are testament to their dedication to the people not just of Britain but also of those around the world. The Royal Family contributes to 2,415 charities across Britain, and almost 3,000 across the world. The charitable work of the British Royal Family have been widely commented on, and the many recipients of their contributions are grateful for their continual efforts to make the world a better place for all to live in.
Queen Elizabeth II has done more for charitable organisations than any other monarch in the history of the British Royal Family, and she is one of the greatest patrons of charities in the world. A recent study conducted by the Charities Aid Foundation revealed that Queen Elizabeth II has raised more than £1.4 billion in aid and support, and she shows no signs of letting up. Queen Elizabeth II is currently the patron to 514 charities across Britain, including the British Red Cross, Barnado’s and Cancer Research UK, one of the worlds leading cancer-focused charities. Queen Elizabeth II has a special interest in charities aimed at tackling issues that affect the community and anything civic related and almost 14% of her contributions are dedicated to organisations focused on these problems.The Queen also has a special interest in issues regarding the education and training of those living in under privileged areas, with such charities also amounting to almost 14% of her total contribution. As the head of the British Royal Family, Queen Elizabeth II obviously has a duty towards the British public, and her concentrated efforts at improving the living quality for those in the British Isles has been extremely successful and very appreciated. Thanks to Queen Elizabeth II, the British Royal Family have become one of the biggest champions of charitable organisations and their importance in the modern world. Her efforts would have been sorely missed were she not such a caring and compassionate figure.
Princess Diana is renowned for her contributions to worldwide charitable organisations, and it was her efforts that in part led to her being titled “Princess of the People”. Diana was famous for being especially compassionate towards those living in developing and war torn countries, and she spent a lot of time visiting these places and highlighting the struggles their people were going through. Princess Diana focused a lot of her energies on helping those suffering from the AIDS virus, and she wholly supported the National Aids Trust. Princess Diana’s involvement with AIDS related charities started in 1987, a time when there was much public ignorance about the disease and how it operated. She helped dispel the incorrect myth that AIDS could be transferred through touch by having her picture taken of her cradling and comforting people suffering from the life threatening ailment.
In addition to her work focusing on helping those with AIDS, Princess Diana also focused a lot of her attention on the issue of the use of land mines and how innocent civilians were being killed or maimed by these devices. She was extremely concerned about the dangers land mines posed for children after conflicts had ended. As the land mines would not be decommissioned, there was still the massive risk of a civilian stepping on the device and being killed or maimed. Princess Diana did not believe in letting others take the lead when it came to charitable work, and she received a lot of criticism in 1997 for touring fields of live land mines clad only in a flack jacket and helmet. Diana shrugged off the criticism and quickly pointed out that the inhabitants of affected areas had a lot less to protect them when they had to pass through mine infested fields. Together with the International Red Cross and the charitable organisation Crusade, Princess Diana was able to apply enough pressure to international governments to force the banning of use of land mines in wars or conflicts. Princess Diana was also well known for raising large amounts of money in the name of her supported charities. In 1997 the Princess auctioned off 79 of the various dresses and ball gowns she had accumulated over the years and thanks to this she was able to raise a total of $6 million, which was later donated to breast cancer and AIDS related charities.
As with Queen Elizabeth II, Princess Diana was also concerned with issues affecting those living in under privileged areas in Britain who may be exposed to crime, poverty, violence, drugs and other serious issues. As a result, Diana was heavily involved with the charitable organisation Centre point, who specialize in helping get homeless young people and teenagers off the streets and living somewhere more settled. Centre point provides temporary shelter, and assists those affected in getting further education with the aim of finding a permanent job. Princess Diana knew the importance of ensuring that the youth of the country were not being neglected, and that those in need were receiving the help they required to get their life on track. Although Princess Diana sadly passed away in 1997, her two sons Prince William and Prince Harry continue her legacy as one of the most caring and charity focused members of the British Royal Family.