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Happy Birthday to Princess Caroline!
Caroline, Princess of Hanover (Caroline Louise Marguerite; born 23 January 1957), is the eldest child of Rainier III, Prince of Monaco, and American actress Grace Kelly. She is the elder sister of Prince Albert II and Princess Stéphanie. Until the births of her niece and nephew Princess Gabriella and Prince Jacques of Monaco in December 2014 she had been heir presumptive to the throne of Monaco since 2005.
Caroline is married to Ernst August, Prince of Hanover (born 1954), the heir to the former throne of the Kingdom of Hanover, as well as the heir male of George III of the United Kingdom.
Princess Caroline has been involved with in such philanthropic organizations as Jeune J’écoute (which she founded herself), the World Association of Children’s Friends (AMADE), the Princess Grace Foundation, the Prince Pierre Foundation, the Peter Le Marchant Trust and UNICEF. Her other patronages include the International School of Paris, Les Ballets de Monte Carlo, which she also founded, the Monte-Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Association des Guides et Scouts de Monaco, the Monte Carlo Garden Club and The Spring Arts Festival.
Following her mother’s death in 1982, Caroline served as de facto first lady of Monaco until her brother married Charlene Wittstock in 2011. She regularly attends important social events in Monaco related to the Monegasque Princely Family, such as the National Day celebrations, the annual Rose Ball, the Red Cross Ball and the Formula One competition Monaco Grand Prix.
Due to her commitment to philanthropy and arts, Caroline was named a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador on 2 December 2003. The UNICEF honoured her with Children’s Champion Award on 20 May 2006. The next year, she travelled to the Republic of South Africa to meet its former president Nelson Mandela. In December 2011, the World Association of Children’s Friends honoured her for “tireless endeavours in continuing the organisation’s legacy”. Her personal friend and the Chanel head designer Karl Lagerfeld presented her the award. Caroline had also previously been given the Grand Cross of the Order of St. Charles, and had been appointed as the Commander of the Order of Cultural Merit.