When Prince William was asked to define what makes him different during an anti-bullying workshop, his very direct and honest answer surprised those taking part. The second in line to the throne wrote: "I Am A Prince" as he took part in Monday's event run by the charity named after his late mother, the Diana Award.
The Prince was involved in a special project which highlighted diversity at Bournville College, Birmingham, where school kids were explaining why they were different.
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Prince William attended the workshop in Birmingham on Monday
British TV singing coach Carrie Grant, who hosted the exercise asked William and the kids to write out something that "defines you." She explained: "I was fascinated by what he might write and how daring he would be. I thought he might write "my mother died" because that's in the public arena and does make him different amongst his peers perhaps. And Harry's been talking a little bit about that in the press.
"But I love the fact that in a way he did challenge us because no one else in the room could say that. We all think "aren't you lucky?" but that comes with responsibility and a load of other things he's had to process and journey through. There are challenges to that."
The royal explained why he was different during the anti-bullying workshop
William enjoyed a fun afternoon learning a rap by the youngsters called Record It, Report It an inspiring monologue from a ten-year-old boy Shahzaib Ali Butt who said: "I was telling him bullying is wrong and young people have the chance to change the world, and everyone's feelings. It's amazing he came here because many people around the world never get the chance to meet a member of the royal family. He's helping us talk about bullying."
The royal ensured he was involved with all the exercises, such as the suggestion for a 'Stand Up Day' proposed for May 27 2016. The children came up with a blue ribbon emblem which could be added to users' social media profiles, which William was a fan of: "I will be involved in however I can," he told the youngsters.
The 33-year-old impressed all those involved, with the charity's anti-bullying campaign head Alex Holmes noting: "He's listening and contributing his own thoughts as a parent. But also he's interested in the role young people can play and social media. That's really impressive in terms of his understanding of just what the issues facing young people and all of us growing up in the digital age."
William connected with young people at the Diana Award charity workshop
Monday's project followed on from a workshop ran by the charity in September which the father-of-two and his wife, the Duchess of Cambridge, née Kate Middleton, attended. William connected with young people as well as fellow parents and was interested in hearing why there was a lot of publicity about health and other social needs but not about bullying.
Carrie Grant, one of the parent representatives said: "We know he's a Prince but he's also a parent and has concerns about his own children growing up in society and what society he's bringing his children up into like we all have as parents. That was underpinning everything we discussed."
Chief executive of the charity Tessy Ojo added to the praise, saying, "he understands that he's different, in the same way that my diference is I'm 6ft 1in and I'm a woman and you don't get that all the time. He's a prince. We all have something unique about us.
Chief executive of the charity Tessy Ojo sang William's praises
"But what we need to do is normalise what looks like a difference. We are all part of one jigsaw. He couldn't possibly walk in everybody's shoes but thats okay as long as you understand that I have different shoes and I appreciate my shoes. He understands about bullying and the pain associated with bullying."
The charity has trained 16,000 ambassadors to 3,000 schools in the UK. William's visit came as an online survey found over half of young people reported negative terms used to describe their appearance, including ethnicity in terms of their skin colour or physical racial features. An overwhelming 76% reported not always fitting in at school, the Diana Award confirmed.
It comes on the day the royal kept his promise to a former homeless young person and took part in an interview for The Big Issue magazine. In the interview, he confirmed that he was inspired to follow on his mother, Princess Diana's, work with the charity Centrepoint as she would take him and brother Prince Harry to hostels and to appreciate the plight of those without a home.
William's day in Birmingham begun with him paying respects to the more than 12,300 people from the city who died fighting in World War I. He laid a wreath at the Hall of Memory in the city before attending the workshop.