Kate Middleton is Praised For Her Commitment to Children as She Steps Out on Solo Engagements

the princess of wales carries out engagements in london
Kate Middleton Meets Carers on Solo VisitKarwai Tang - Getty Images

The Princess of Wales launched her campaign for the early years, Shaping Us, in January this year. And today she was out and about in London on two engagements highlighting the importance of nurturing relationships in early childhood.

Kate visited the Foundling Museum near to King’s Cross to speak with people who have experience of the care system including young people, foster carers, and adoptive parents. Kensington Palace said she was keen to highlight the “increased importance of strong, loving and consistent relationships to children who experience adversity, trauma, or bereavement in early life.”

Ahead of Kate’s arrival, a small group of royal enthusiasts and curious onlookers had gathered by the entrance to the museum alongside media. One protestor joined them, and on the Princess’s departure she shouted “born equal, boo” as royal supporters cheered.

The foundling museum tells the story of the Foundling Hospital, which was set up in 1739 as a home for babies and children whose families couldn’t care for them. Today, it delivers training, mentorship and creative programs to help young people with experience of the care system.

Inside the museum, Kate met with care leavers and also spent time with adoptive parents and foster carers to discuss how they nurture relationships. “To have her actually come and support this is amazing. She’s a very nice person, she’s very humble and down to earth and it feels quite natural and comfortable to talk to her,” said Bez, who was in care as a teenager and now works as an assistant on an art program the museum provides. Of the impact of the visit, he said, “It means quite a lot because you kind of feel pushed aside to the kerbs of society. Nobody is looking at your talents, your ambitions and your wants and needs are kind of denied…Seeing that somebody as important as Kate, comes in and sees us and gives us that spotlight to feel like we are actually making a big move.”

Kate was also joined by rapper and songwriter Professor Green as she met with trainees who have taken part in the museum’s creative-writing program. The themes of the Museum’s current exhibition Finding Family inspired the trainees to create their poetry.

Afterwards Kate met with some adoptive and foster parents. “I think she wanted to better understand the challenges that we face,” said Ryan Lynch, a father of two adopted sons. “She wanted to know how we can be better supported in those roles, and she was particularly interested in mental health. He added about the impact of the visit, “The fact that they are interested in such a significant social issue - children in care - is really remarkable…I think that recognition that someone of that status has an interest in someone who is so completely of a different social background…It says you are a valued human being, a valued part of society and we want to do what we can to demonstrate that…It says you are recognized, you are seen, we want to hear you, you are not only discarded by society. It can speak volumes about trying to impact your circumstances and situations for the better.”

Following her visit to the Foundling Museum, Kate met with carers who have been supported by caring charity Kinship. Kensington Palace said that the charity supports more than 10,000 carers in England and Wales through free training sessions, support groups and advice.

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