It isn’t often that the general public get to meet members of the royal family, but aspiring entrepreneurs have been given the opportunity to do just that. On Tuesday, Prince Andrew took to Instagram Stories on his official social media account, where he called for people to apply for his next Pitch@Palace initiative. The platform was founded by the Duke of York in 2014 to help entrepreneurs and business start-ups gain a platform. In a short video posted on Instagram, previous candidates spoke about why the initiative was so worth getting involved in. One said: "I was extremely nervous but in the end it was amazing," while another added: "It helped us take our business to the next level."
Prince Andrew is inviting budding candidates to join the latest Pitch@Palace
Andrew himself regularly attends the pitching events, and in November he headed over to Sydney to take part in the latest Pitch@Palace. Andrew took a great interest in the work of the candidates, and posed for a photo with all the entrepreneurs. The Pitch@Palace incentive picks 42 entrepreneurs for each event, and after participating, they remain within the alumni, with access to support, introductions and connections to mentors and advisors. Well-known names involved in helping aspiring business people succeed include Peter Jones.
Andrew in Sydney with Pitch@Palace back in November
Both of Andrew's daughters, Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice, are following in both his and their mum Sarah Ferguson's footsteps when it comes to setting up causes to help others. The family together also set up charity Key to Freedom, which was founded in 2012. The initiative supports India-based charity Women's Interlink Foundation, which helps vulnerable young women gain skills to earn an income. Key to Freedom have placed products in stores including Topshop.
Sarah has previously opened up about Key to Freedom, telling Marie Claire: "One of the most important things is making dreams come true and I am so supportive of Aloka Mitra [founder of the Women’s Interlink Foundation] and her ladies for doing exactly this. The work they do brings dignity to their lives, and the impact of this project has had a profound effect on the ladies' futures. I am very proud to be a part of Key To Freedom."
Aloka and The Women's Interlink even played a special role in Princess Eugenie's wedding in October, with the charity producing the goody bags that were given to members of the public who had been invited. Aloka was also a guest at the ceremony, having remained close with the York family.
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