Queen Sofia of Spain, Europe’s oldest royal dynasty, turns 83 – but won’t slow down | Royal | New
DoÃ±a SofÃa, who belongs to the oldest royal dynasty in Europe – the house of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-GlÃ¼cksburg, also called the house of GlÃ¼cksburg, a branch of the Danish dynasty of Oldenburg -, is a strong member of a family scrutinized during a long-standing corruption scandal.
The former queen of Spain, who celebrated her 83rd birthday on Tuesday, stayed with her son and daughter-in-law, supporting them in their royal duties, at a time when the family struggled to repair the damaged image left by the former King Juan Carlos I.
Since King Philip VI, 53, ascended to the throne following his father’s abdication in 2014, he and Queen Letizia, 49, have had to subtly but surely struggle against a reputation caused by the scandal. of the alleged financial irregularities of Juan Carlos.
In March of last year, Juan Carlos, 83, stopped receiving his annual salary and months later moved to the United Arab Emirates to escape – at least in part – the backlash of numerous ongoing investigations. about his finances.
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It is widely reported in Spain that the marriage of DoÃ±a SofÃa and Juan Carlos – although they have not divorced – is over. Yet Sofia never had a bad word for him, even after he left for Dubai.
In an excerpt published in 1997 in the biography of Pilar Urbano, the former queen evokes what could explain her attitude towards her (still) husband: “Love is a living feeling that evolves over time.
“Ours has become a friendship.
“We’re not the same at all and we don’t like the same things.
“But I, as a woman, as a friend, I am his teammate and I am always at his disposal.”
Over the past year, Sofia has worked hard both for the Crown and for the charities of which she is the patron.
Operation Cold, the mission launched by the Reina SofÃa Foundation to provide food banks with refrigerated trucks and storage facilities with the aim of providing people in need with fresh produce that could not otherwise be transported, is the one of the many initiatives it has carried out.
In addition to food banks, in which DoÃ±a SofÃa made special efforts throughout the coronavirus pandemic, she is very involved in causes in the areas of cancer, rare diseases and the climate.
In recent years, she has become a habit of collecting garbage on Spanish beaches and other natural environments.
She joined a group of volunteers from Ecoembes and SEO BirdLife, two leading environmental organizations, last September to collect plastic bottles, cans and cigarette butts dressed comfortably and wearing gloves on a beach in Alicante, a port city in the southeast of the Costa Blanca, Spain.
As long as health permits, Sofia should continue to support the monarchy and the causes she believes in, just as the Spaniards have always known their former queen.