The Duchess of Cambridge, Patron of Action on Addiction, attended the first annual gala dinner in recognition of Addiction Awareness Week, hosted by Action on Addiction and chef Skye Gyngell, and deliver a speech to celebrate the work of the charity at Spring Restaurant in London.
Action on Addiction, one of Catherine’s early patronages, is the only UK addictions charity that works across all the areas of research, treatment, family support and professional education. The charity is also one of the 8 chosen charities that will be benefitted from William and Catherine’s new initiative ‘The King’s Cup’ – a sailing regatta that will be hosted this summer.
Addiction Awareness Week, 10-16 June 2019, aims to provide a platform to discuss the many elements of addiction, to engage with people and families affected, and to raise public awareness.
Before the dinner, Catherine met Action on Addiction clients who are working as apprentices in the kitchen and worked with Spring Restaurant’s head chef and owner Skye Gyngell to create the evening’s meal.
Catherine met with Jay Otty, who has been sober for nine years and now works at a dry bar The Brink and Melanie Bennett who got treated at the charity’s Self-Help Addiction Recovery Programme. They both helped head chef and owner Skye Gyngell to create the evening’s meal.
The Duchess gave opening remarks at the event to recognise the work done by the charity and talked about how her time as Patron has also inspired other elements of her work. Her Full speech text,
Action on Addiction was one of my very first patronages, and as such, it is very close to my heart. I’m hugely passionate about the support it provides, especially for parents,children and families who suffer from, or through, addiction. And in some ways, it was the catalyst for my interest in early childhood development too.
For the last few years, I’ve been focussing on the importance of prevention:how can we all really support the earliest years of life, build foundations, and help avoid adversity later on in life. Having met so many people who’ve suffered from addiction, I have seen over and over again that, sadly, the root cause can so often be traced right back to the very earliest years of someone’s life.
Trauma experienced in early childhood, in some cases, as a result of separation, abandonment, abuse, or even emotional neglect, can have a lasting effect. What we experience during our earliest years, even while we’re still in the womb, shapes the developing brain.
It is therefore vital that we support everyone who cares for children in those formative years, especially if we want to help with the inter-generational cycle of addiction. Sadly, for many who are suffering with addiction, they just don’t receive the help they need early enough. They have already reached crisis point before they find the support they need.
What’s remarkable about Action on Addiction is that it goes beyond helping those who are suffering on the courageous journey into recovery – it also lends direct support to the children and families affected by addiction – for as long as it takes. This evening’s dinner not only marks ‘Addiction Awareness Week’, but it also provides an opportunity for us all to remember the vital work being done to help all those affected by addiction feel able to access help, hope and freedom from their addiction.
There was never a more important time for Action on Addiction to succeed. And I, for one, could not be more delighted to support such a special organisation. Graham, I look forward to working together, and, as your Patron, doing all I can, to help your important mission in the future.
Catherine’s experience with Action on Addiction has helped lay the groundwork for her work and understanding on mental health and is currently helping inform her work in developing a major project around support for children in their earliest years. Experiences in these earliest moments, before the age of five, are proven to have a significant impact on adult lives, including resilience and the ability to cope with adversity.
Action on Addiction builds communities of recovery for individuals and families by developing the best quality and most effective residential and community-based addiction treatment services in the UK and promoting self-help, peer-to-peer support, and community cohesion. The charity also campaigns to raise the standard of professional education across the addictions field, funds groundbreaking research into different facets of addiction, increase access to treatment for all those who need it, and strives to remove the stigma relating to addiction and associated issues.
For the night, Duchess chose to bring back one of her stunning looks.
She was wearing Barbara Casasola Off-the-shoulder mesh-paneled stretch-jersey dress that she first wore in July 2016 at Art Fund Prize Dinner. Middleton Maven on Twitter found a similar style still available on label’s online store.
Duchess paired the dress with Jimmy Choo Romy 100 Silver and Dusk Blue Fireball Glitter Dégradé Fabric Pointy Toe Pumps that she first wore at BAFTA 2019.
A new element of the look is Wilbur & Gussie Charlie Steel Classic Silk Clutch. Thanks to Laura on Twitter for the quickest id.
The £205 light grey clutch is crafted from 100% outer silk layer and features a silver crystal bee brooch, silk wrist strap and magnetic fastening.
She finished her look with Kiki Lola Blue Topaz Hoop Earrings.
Next, we will see Duchess on Monday at Windsor Castle for Order of Garter Service that is going to be a huge royal turnout this year as Queen Letizia of Spain and Queen Maxima of Netherlands will be there supporting their husbands.