The Princess of Wales left her latest engagement feeling "inspired" as she marked Mental Health Awareness Week. She was all smiles as she arrived at Anna Freud's London HQ on Thursday, wearing a green button-up shirt dress by Suzannah London and two-tone Alessandra Rich heels.
The royal mum-of-three spoke to secondary school students from St Richard’s College in Bexhill-on-Sea, Sussex about Anna Freud's “let’s talk about anxiety” new animation and teacher toolkit, which typifies the charity's vision to empower young people with the knowledge, confidence and skills to manage their mental wellbeing.
When one of the pupils mentioned her interest in sport, Kate replied: "So much in sport is mental as well as the physical skills and abilities, to have these sort of skills and these sorts of things in your toolbox will really help you, probably not just in school but home life and school life and other things as well."
The Princess also joined experts and Anna Freud staff for a series of roundtable discussions to talk about how we can support the mental wellbeing of current and future generations. See highlights from Kate's outing in the clip below...
It comes after Kate, who has been patron of Anna Freud since 2016, launched the Shaping Us campaign through her Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood in January. It aims to "transform the issue of early childhood from one of scientific interest to one of the most strategically important topics of our time".
The Princess was seated alongside Prof Peter Fonagy, chief executive of Anna Freud and a member of the Royal Foundation’s Early Childhood Advisory Group.
Prof Fonagy revealed afterwards that the Princess had taken a copy of the anxiety toolkit with her.
"She took a copy away with her because she's in the same position as every other parent of needing to have the skills and the competencies to cope with an anxious child, a child before an exam…" he said.
"Do we know how to do it? We don't teach it at school. We should teach it at school but we don't."
As she went on a brief walkabout after leaving the institution, based in central London, she met a group of children and their parents outside and told them: "I'm leaving feeling inspired – I've learned lots from young people."
Earlier this week, the Princess made a surprising admission about royal life as she joined a Dame Kelly Holmes Trust event in Bath.
When Kate sat down for a chat with a group of schoolgirls from St Katherine's School in Bristol supported by the charity, she opened up the floor to questions about herself.
Asked if she wanted to be a "royal" by a pupil, the Princess replied it was something she had not expected but she "fell in love" with William.
Commenting afterwards about the pupils' chat with the princess, Dame Kelly said she posed a question about Kate's three children asking if she saw different "traits" in them, and the royal replied: "Oh yes, definitely".
The double Olympic champion founded her national youth development organisation on the belief that every young person needs a champion.
It pairs world-class athletes with youngsters who may have lack confidence or have other issues, so the sportsmen or women can pass on their winning mindset and help the children develop the skills and confidence they need to succeed in life.
The Princess of Wales has long been a champion of prioritising mental wellbeing, including that of children and young people. Kate has dedicated her time to supporting various mental health programmes, such as the launch of Heads Together, Shout 85258, and the Mentally Healthy Schools programme. She is also patron of a number of charities which are focussed on promoting and providing mental health support to those in need.
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