Saturday, March 22, 2014

Royal Profile: Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxemburg

Grand  Duchess Teresa of Luxembourg was born as Maria Teresa Mestre on 22 March 1956 in Havana, Cuba {Source}. When she was just two years old, she and her family made the move to the United States, settling in New York, NY {Source}. When she was 9 years old, her family picked up for another big move-this time to Switzerland, where she aquired Swiss citizenship {Source}.

Her education began in the United States at the Marymount School in NY, before attending L'École française de New York {Source}. When her family moved to Europe, she began attending the Marie-Thérèse boarding  School, obtaining her French  Baccalaureate in June 1975 {Source}. Upon completing her compulsatory education, she began studying at the Graduate Institute of International Studies in Switzerland, obtaining a Bachelor of Political Science in 1980 {Source}. During her education, she was very interested in humanitarian efforts, especially those efforts geared towards caring for the elderly and children with disabilities {Source}.

During her university studies, she met the then-Hereditary Grand Duke of Luxembourg  {Source}. After graduation, they were soon engaged, and were married on 14 February 1981, where she became HRH Princess Maria Teresa, Hereditary Grand Duchess of Luxembourg {Source}. Together, they have five children, three daughter-in-laws, two grandchildren and one grandchild on the way{Source}:
After her marriage, she and The Hereditary Grand Duke createded the Prince Henri and Princess Maria Teresa Foundation to support people with specific needs and to aid in their integration in society {Source}. This organization was merged with The Grand Duke and Grand Duchess Foundation in 2004{Source}

On 10 June 1997, Princess Maria Teresa become a Goodwill Ambassador for UNESCO, where she aims to promote education of young girls and women, and fights against poverty through microcredits {Source}. She regularly makes trips abroad on behalf of her different projects, many of which take interest in child soldiers, and the protection of children  and orphans affected by HIV/AIDS {Source}.For her ongoing comittment to these causes, she was named the 2007 “Eminent Advocate for Children” of UNICEF {Source}.

On 7 October 2000, her father-in-law abdicated in favor of her husband, in which she was raised from Princess of Luxembourg to Grand Duchess of Luxembourg {Source}.

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