Queen Maxima brings joy to locals on royal tour abroad
11 DECEMBER 2013Queen Maxima of the Netherlands looked in high spirits as she was pictured halfway through her five-day tour of Ethiopia and nearby Tanzania.
The Dutch royal, who is scheduled to travel to the second country on Wednesday, seems to have enjoyed the first leg of her trip.
As Maxima arrived in Hawassa Airport, she was greeted by officials and presented with a beautiful bouquet of red and yellow roses. The fashion-forward royal, who is praised for her elegant style, donned a colourful wrap-around shirt and bold yellow trousers.
As the UN Secretary-General's Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development, Maxima is hoping to raise awareness of how farmers' and traders' lives could be improved if they were given access to financial services, such as bank accounts and loans.
The mother-of-three wasted no time in setting to work, and paid a visit to the Cooperative Union in Hawassa. The Dutch queen looked delighted to meet local craftsmen who showed her their hand-woven products and gave her a handmade white and red striped shawl.
Travelling with senior officials from the UN agencies focusing on food secruity, Maxima made another stop at the Anja Cfefa school in Boricha Woreda. The mother-of-three was a natural with the children, chatting away and waving to them as she arrived.
Maxima spoke with small-scale farmers, who provide the school with food, about how they manage their money and how accessing basic financial services could help them.
During her field trips in Ethiopia, Maxima has taken part in meetings with senior government officials and international financial organisation authorities, to talk about improving the livelihoods of locals.
Maxima will continue her tour to Tanzania, before returning home on Friday.