While the World was busy being baffled by the ongoing Royal Circus, The Princess of Wales, Catherine was busy behind the scene with her legacy project – The Early years. As per the Mirror Royal Reports, Russell Myers, “The Princess of Wales will be making a huge announcement at the end of the month that will introduce a new revolutionary “three to five-year programme” aimed at impacting the vital first five years of every child’s life. The programme will engage the medical and academic world to revolutionise thinking for parents, carers and teachers across the world to increase the focus on the first years of a child’s life in impacting later life“.
Whenever we will talk about Catherine’s role as a member of the British Royal Family/The Duchess of Cambridge/The Princess of Wales/ The Future Queen of the UK – her work with children, families and mental health will come up as her legacy. The first few years of childhood are more pivotal for development, future health and happiness, than any other single moment of our lifetime. With a greater focus on the early years, The Princess of Wales believes we can provide better solid social and emotional platforms for children to make them healthier and more resilient later in life.
For the last 12 years, Catherine has been working tirelessly to make the early years as important as any other social, political or economic cause. She has been supporting charities and organisations working with families to give children a better start to life, meeting scientists and academicians to learn more about what could be done to improve the first five years of children’s life.
The Princess of Wales convened a steering group in 2018 to look at how they could work collaboratively to bring about positive lasting change.
In 2020, a landmark survey was launched by The Princess of Wales, then The Duchess of Cambridge, to learn about parents, caretakers and guardians’ views on the topic of early childhood. In June 2021, Catherine established the Royal Foundation Center for Early Childhood to study the root causes of social issues such as addiction and violence with three key areas:
- Promoting/commissioning high-quality research
- Collaborating with experts in the public, private and voluntary sectors
- Developing creative campaigns for awareness and action.
From the Mirror’s report,
A royal source said: “Of course there have been other distractions but the Princess has had far more important things on her mind. It’s an important and exciting time. The campaign she has been working on really is the result of several months behind the scenes (and) will launch a new three to five year programme. (Kate) spends a lot of time reading, meeting and speaking with professionals across the entire field – but this isn’t just one project, it’s an opportunity to make generational change for all our children.
There are a number of creative parts in the process for parents and non-parents to be involved across the country with lots more to come and the hope is as many people as possible, from those in the medical and academic world as well as parents and non-parents, join the journey.“
In 2022, The Princess of Wales took her legacy project overseas and made a two days long working visit to Denmark. The country is a beacon of best practice in its approach to the early years, with a culture that prioritizes the best start in life. During her time there, Catherine participated in a range of activities designed to highlight her commitment to early childhood development.
Then On the Day 3 of the Boston Visit, Catherine, The Princess of Wales visited the Developing Child Center at Harvard University as part of her legacy project Early years to meet with the researchers to discuss advances in science that can help children. Ahead of the Boston visit, The Princess of Wales shared her thoughts about her project in The Daily Telegraph,
Over the past 10 years, talking to a wide range of experts about how we deal with societal issues like poor mental and physical health, I have become more and more sure of one thing: if we are going to create a healthier and happier society for future generations, we must start by understanding and acknowledging the unique importance of the first five years of life… I am determined to continue to shine a light on this issue and to do everything I can to secure much greater focus on those first crucial few years for the youngest members of our society – they are, after all, our future – The Princess of Wales
This upcoming announcement would be a huge milestone in a long journey That The Princess of Wales is determined to see through. She is just not focused on giving her three children a happy and healthy childhood but also wants to give every child the best possible start to their life. After all these children will be tomorrow’s civil society. As Professor Peter Fonagy once said that the Princess “is the most important woman doing this in the world right now, to the millions of children who have been suffering in silence, she is their voice”. You can read all about The Princess of Wales’s work in the Early years here.