It was an afternoon of inspiration and celebration when Sarah, Duchess of York and Princess Eugenie attended a special mother-daughter event close to their hearts – an afternoon tea held on behalf of Street Child and hosted by HELLO! at Claridges in London last week. Sarah, the charity's founder patron, was clearly delighted to be joined by her younger daughter as she said: "She's such a hardworking girl but has taken time off for Mum today. She loves to support Street Child, and as a family we support each other."
Video: Sarah, Duchess of York joins HELLO! at a special Street Child afternoon tea
Guests – who included Binky Felstead and her mother Jane, Amal Clooney's mother Baria Alamuddin, Loose Women presenter Saira Khan, and Rachel Riley and her mother Celia – mingled at a champagne reception before sitting down for afternoon tea and a panel discussion about the work Street Child does to educate and empower children in some of the world's toughest places.
"I feel very strongly that every child has the right to dare to dream for an education," said Sarah, whose charity Children in Crisis, which she established in 1992, merged with Street Child last year. "I am the luckiest woman alive to have two extraordinary girls who work so hard in their charity work. They are the best examples of what true, proper ambassadors for life should be. They are desperately humble and so kind, genuinely love and enjoy life and I believe it's because we all work so hard at good mothering, being good girls and talking about everything. Both the Duke and I stand very firmly on familyhood and we really believe in the integrity of goodness, and they are the best examples of that."
"She's such a hardworking girl but has taken time off for Mum today," said Sarah of her daughter Princess Eugenie
On Tuesday, Sarah will mark her 60th birthday, just days after Princess Eugenie and her husband Jack Brooksbank celebrated their first wedding anniversary on 12 October. Princess Beatrice and her fiancé Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi also have a wedding to plan. "Eugenie has got married to Jack and is very happy. Beatrice and Edoardo is very good news, and they're very happy," said Sarah, adding: "I think it's really important that my life if beginning at 60, I'm so excited by it."
The afternoon tea also marked Sarah's early birthday celebrations
At the tea, the Duchess was welcomed on stage by HELLO! editor-in-chief Rosie Nixon to chair a panel discussion on the work Street Child is doing with vulnerable girls across the world. A rallying cry for funds was raised by the Duchess, with three pledges for £5000 each to help build three schools made on the spot. All funds raised from the event will be matched by the UK Government.
Sarah was presented with a beautiful birthday cake
The event was brought to a celebratory end as the Duchess, presented with a surprise birthday cake with candles by Rosie, was treated to a rousing rendition of Happy Birthday from the guests, who rose to their feet.
Give before 4th January and your donation to Street Child's Mind the Gap appeal will be doubled by the UK Government up to £2 million. For further info visit www.street-child.co.uk.
Pick up this week's copy of HELLO! magazine for the full interview.