After a decade of hard work and advocacy, Duchess Catherine just announced her biggest investment in early childhood to date

The British royal has passionately worked to support early childhood growth and development across the Commonwealth.
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Today, Duchess Catherine made one of her biggest announcements to date – one that’s been an entire decade in the making.

The British royal has launched The Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood – a place to enhance and continue to drive forward the work she has done in early childhood support and development.

The Duchess’ work in the space is well documented. After welcoming her own children – Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, Kate’s dedication to bring support and raise awareness of the importance of a child’s first five years has been significant.

Last year, she launched the Five Big Questions survey, a nation-wide effort which quizzed parents on the areas in which work needed to be done for young children who were not exposed to basic support and mental development.

In a statement released today, Kate said: “Our first five years lay important foundations for our future selves. This period is when we first learn to manage our emotions and impulses, to care and to empathise, and thus ultimately to establish healthy relationships with ourselves and others.”

The Duchess also reiterated of a child’s early years: “It is a time when our experience of the world around us, and the way that moulds our development, can have a lifelong impact on our future mental and physical wellbeing.

“Indeed, what shapes our childhood shapes the adults and the parents we become.”

In a Palace statement, the reasoning behind Kate’s dedication to launch the Early Childhood Centre was further explained: “Her Royal Highness is committed to elevating the importance of early childhood and continuing the conversation on this vital issue.

“The launch of The Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood is a landmark step in Her Royal Highness’ work and signals her lifelong commitment to improving outcomes across society.”

Kensington Palace released this still image of Kate to coincide with the announcement.

(Kensington Palace)

The Duchess’ Five Big Questions survey last year drew hundreds of thousands of responses, which has been a staple in leading her next move.

Worryingly, the findings revealed a lot of people’s lack of understanding around the specific importance of early childhood. It also revealed that the COVID-19 pandemic had resulted in a dramatic increase in parental loneliness.

To add to this, new research coinciding with Kate’s Early Childhood Centre’s launch revealed that parents of young children have continued to feel lonelier as the COVID-19 pandemic has continued. The research was commissioned by The Royal Foundation and conducted by YouGov.

Kate shared a statement in the Centre’s inaugural report: Big Change Starts Small.

This is a milestone move from Kate, whose passion and dedication for children across the Commonwealth and beyond has remained a staple in her role as a royal.

The launch of the centre will no doubt add significant amounts of valuable insight, support and, with a little drive, a big difference to parents and children to come.

WATCH: Duchess Catherine wears pink to meet young cancer patient, Mila:

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