UNESCO Special Envoy


In March 2009, Her Royal Highness Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands was appointed to be the UNESCO Special Envoy on Literacy for Development. This was in recognition of her lifelong mission to enforce the conviction that literacy is a basic human right and a precondition for a healthy, strong and durable society.

From becoming aware of the problem when she was a student at the University of California, Berkeley (USA) to her volunteer work to help illiterate adults in Brussels, to starting the Reading & Writing Foundation in the Netherlands, she has campaigned for this cause and raised public and political awareness wherever and whenever she could. She has built up extensive practical experience on dealing with this problem, built up networks and inspired organisations and individuals to take up this cause.