Queen Máxima in Warffum

On Thursday 6 November 2014 Queen Máxima of the Netherlands travelled to the northeast of the Netherlands for a visit to two projects supported by the Oranje Fonds, that she and her husband received as a wedding gift in 2002, and the “Fonds voor Cultuurparticipatie” (Fund for cultural Participation). Two projects that take part in the programme “Kinderen maken Muziek” (Children make Music), that was a gift to the Queen for her 40th birthday.

Despite of just having returned from state visits to Japan and South Korea the previous morning, Queen Máxima looked radiant in a brown outfit. At first she talked to initiators, teachers and volunteers of the Power Play Programme in Warffum. Members of the local bands “Euphonia” from Warffum and “Triton” from Winsum told her about their co-operation with schools and municipality. It was mentioned how important it is for the livability to have an active social life in the village. “Triton” and “Euphonia” offer music lessons at schools, so that the self-confidence of children becomes bigger by letting them play music. It is combined with reading books, and making songs based on these books, which makes the project also important for children with dyslexia. It was stressed that for the children that are participating in the programme right now, it is an highlight that the Queen is coming to hear them play, and the experience will stay with them for ever. The schools are happy with the support of the Oranje Fonds, and a teacher said that it is really “a gift” that they can teach the children how wonderful music is. They are very enthusiastic that they can play music together.

The Queen moved by car from the “De Sjelter” community centre to the Jansenius de Vries School nearby. It was clear that the school was well prepared for the visit. Young children in blue t-shirts were already waiting behind the windows and looking curiously at what happened outside. In the hall several little jobs of the children could be seen. And inside children from the highest classes of the primary school, in orange t-shirts, waited pretty nervous for the Queen. They were so proud to sing, play and dance for their Queen about the “life of a Paramecium” (Het leven van een pantoffeldiertje), who only lives two days, and that they are tinier than a dot on the i. Afterwards children answered questions of the Queen, who wanted to know for example whether they would like to go on playing instruments, as she of course would love them to continue. One young boy said wisely that music is nice because you can make other people happy with it, and of course he was totally right. In the end the Queen received a book with messages of children of the school, and of course the text of the song that had been sung … then Queen Máxima had to leave, but not before saying goodbye to everyone and waving extensively from her car.

Queen Máxima left and was driven to the “Rijdende Popschool” programme in Garmerwolde. She also learnt about this project before returning home to The Hague.

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