Expressions of interest
There are many instances where the King and Queen show particular interest for individual cases. Among these are:
The processing and outcome of the many petitions that the King receives daily are a consequence of his natural role as an ombudsman - a mediator between the people and the various authorities.
The Petitions and Social Affairs Service at the Royal Palace aims at helping those people who appeal, as a last resort, to the King and Queen and to other members of the Royal Family.
All these petitions are subjected to in-depth scrutiny and require regular contacts between the Palace and the relevant authorities and services.
The Petitions and Social Affairs Service is responsible for ensuring cases are followed up with the applicants.
100th birthdays and special wedding anniversaries
People who reach the age of 100, people in holy orders celebrating 50, 60, 65 and 70 years in their vocation and couples celebrating their golden, diamond, sapphire or platinum wedding anniversaries are congratulated by the Sovereigns.
Traditionally, the King and the Queen are the godfather or godmother of the seventh son or seventh daughter in a family, on condition that this succession of sons or daughters is unbroken.
The King and the Queen may also be godparents of a seventh consecutive son or seventh consecutive daughter of a family that has been established in Belgium for a sufficiently long period. This is a royal favour and therefore not granted automatically.