Patron: Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Mary of Denmark
Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Mary of Denmark has shown her commitment and dedication to immunization since she first became WHO/Europe’s Patron. Announcing her patronage at the European Regional Committee on 11 September 2006, she said:
"As a mother I want to ensure that my child has every opportunity to grow up healthy, and vaccinated against those diseases that can so easily be controlled. As patron I want to ensure that this opportunity is given to every child in the European Region, and that we also reach those vulnerable groups that continue to exist. It is the right of every child to be immunized."
As part of European Immunization Week 2008, Crown Princess Mary attended a launching ceremony in Ljubljana, Slovenia on 23 April 2008. Addressing members of the diplomatic corps, health professionals and the mass media, she emphasized the importance of immunization, saying:
"I hope that the countries within the [European Region] will act quickly and effectively to ensure that children and adults, especially those in vulnerable and hard-to-reach groups, have access to immunization and basic health services."
Crown Princess Mary has issued statements of support for subsequent European Immunization Weeks and continues to be a strong advocate for vaccination in the European Region.