The Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood, a project that Kate started a year and a half ago, now has an online presence for further promotion of its goals and achievements.
Kate Middleton’s biggest undertaking in the last couple of years has been The Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood, a center that she and Prince William created within the larger Royal Foundation in June 2021, whose goal it is to raise awareness of the importance of the first five years of life and advance outcomes for a better tomorrow.
And now it seems that the royal has made another step with her project, quietly launching a new Instagram page earlier this month for The Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood. The first post was made on January 19th, with the following posts all being of Kate’s related engagement so far this year, such as her visit to FoxcubsNursey and the inaugural meeting of the Advisory Group overseeing the Centre for Early Childhood.
There is also a video featuring the Princess of Wales, in which the royal talks about the lasting impact of the first years of a child’s life.
“Our early childhood, the time from pregnancy to the age of five, fundamentally shapes the rest of our lives,” she said. “But as a society, we currently spend much more of our time and energy on later life. Today, the Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood is launching a new campaign, Shaping Us, to raise awareness of the life-changing impact we can have when we build a supportive, nurturing world around children and those who care for them.”
She added, “Because by focusing our collective time, energy and resources on these most preventative years, we can make a huge difference to the physical and mental health and happiness of generations to come.”
The Shaping Us campaign, which started this Monday, aims to “increase public understanding of the crucial importance of the first five years of a child’s life” and bring scientific interest into “one of the most strategically important topics of our time,” according to the Royal Foundation.
Kicking off the whole campaign on Monday in London, Kate gave a landmark speech, followed by the release of a claymation film that highlighted how babies and young children develop in response to their earliest experiences.
Then the next day on Tuesday Kate hit the road, bringing the campaign to Leeds Kirkgate market. During her visit she talked with vendors about the early years, as well as with members of the public who were out shopping. A central focus for Leeds is exactly children’s and young people’s interests. The city, located around 200 miles north of London, has the ambition of becoming the best place in the U.K. for children and young people to grow up.
Princess Kate has a personal connection to the city as well, as her father, Michael Middleton, was born here, and the royal has family ancestors in the county of Yorkshire.
Shirley Wainwright, 75, from Harrogate, Yorkshire, was among the few that chatted with the Princess, and following their encounter told PEOPLE magazine: “She said she was really looking forward to being here. She said she’s got a massive family tree and that there’s a lot of history around here in Leeds and is determined to come back.”
The royal got to see a huge display of her Shaping Us campaign on display at the market, followed by a short walk around the market through the crowd of excited shoppers, all surprised by her visit. Two mothers carrying babies caught her eye. Louise Keith, who was shopping with her 8-month-old baby Sadie, had this to say about the royal: “We told her how Leeds is such a great place to bring up kids. Her campaign is a great initiative. It’s good for people who need it. We are fortunate that we have a good community network around us, but it’s good for those who don’t.”
Joan Dove, 75, a resident of York, was shocked when the Princess said she was pleased to meet her. “It’s humbling when someone like her says that,” Dove says. “I have seen about the campaign on the TV. She does a lot of work for children. She’s so natural with people.”
The newest post shared on the new account of The Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood was a video message from Kate, where she added that “by focusing our collective time, energy & resources on these most preventative years, we can make a huge difference.”