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Prince William highlights an issue close to his mother's heart

20 November 2015
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Prince William turned his attention to an issue that was close to his late mother Princess Diana's heart on Thursday evening. The Prince attended a glittering awards ceremony to support a charity which gives homeless young people a future.Speaking at the first annual Centrepoint awards in London as patron of the organisation, William said: "Ten years ago, Centrepoint was one of the first charities that I officially became associated with.

william © Photo: Getty Images
Prince William made a speech at the first annual Centrepoint awards in London on Thursday

"During that time, I have seen the charity adapt to the challenges of tackling youth homelessness with continued optimism and enthusiasm. "He continued, "Some young people can find themselves denied the most basic of comforts, such as a safe place to sleep, a guaranteed source of food or simply someone to turn to for advice. This can often be due to reasons beyond their control.

William also pointed out that "the impact of homelesseness is not temporary". He said: "All too often, a person's long-term mental and physical health, education and sense of self-worth can also be at risk.

william2 © Photo: Getty Images
The Prince met a host of youths who have defied their troubled backgrounds

"Ending youth homelessness remains an urgent challenge – too many in society are still unaware of just how many young people need our help. "William, 33, also got to meet a host of youths who have defied their troubled backgrounds to become "beacons of hope" for others, including a woman who went from living on the street to becoming a world champion power lifter.

diana © Photo: Getty Images
Princess Diana was patron of the charity; pictured in 1995 raising awareness for the cause

William's ongoing commitment to one of the several charities supported by the Princess of Wales was underscored when, in December 2009, he spent one night on the streets with the charity's chief executive, Seyi Obakin.

The royal has been patron of Centrepoint, which provides a safe place to live for thousands of young people every year, since 2005. Princess Diana was herself a patron, and even took her young boys William and Harry with her on private visits to the organisation's services.

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