Kate Middleton says she’s ‘absolutely determined’ to change attitudes to early years development
‘I am determined to make a change’: Princess of Wales releases heartfelt open letter as she launches new early years campaign which has been ‘her life’s work’
The Princess of Wales today launches a major campaign to raise awareness of children’s development before their fifth birthday.
In an open letter published in The Mail on Sunday, Kate sets out her plan for ‘Shaping Us’, an ambitious long-term project in which she urges the nation to pull together to improve lives.
The Princess wrote the impassioned plea on her laptop as she was preparing for today’s campaign launch – to be followed by a week-long publicity blitz in which she will be joined by celebrities and influencers from the worlds of music, media and sport.
The campaign will include both eye-catching videos and social media messages.
The Princess of Wales has said she is ‘absolutely determined’ to change attitudes to the development of children during the early years of their lives in an open letter, released with two images of Kate (pictured) visiting and talking to children
Kate’s (pictured talking to children) awareness-raising campaign, ‘highlighting the critical importance’ of a person’s first five years in shaping their adult life, will be launched by the Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood this week
A spokesperson for the Princess described it as ‘her life’s work’.
Kate gave a sneak preview of the Shaping Us campaign last night with a short video on social media.
In the 50-second film, her hands are seen opening a photograph album with a blank cover. Inside, next to a picture of an adult man she writes the question: ‘What shapes us?’ On other pages we see photos of families, an ultrasound scan and a pregnant woman.
Princess Kate posted a video to Twitter teasing the campaign launch after she met her team of advisers on the subject for the first time earlier this week
When Kate removes a picture of a little girl from the album, it reveals the words: ‘Our early childhood shapes the adults we become.’
It is the start of what Kensington Palace is hoping will be a huge multi-media push to raise awareness of how our early years mould our lives.
The campaign is a bold, more public direction for the Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood, set up by the Princess, then Duchess of Cambridge, in June 2021.
Reports produced by the centre have revealed that the first five years shape future wellbeing more than any other stage of development, with our brains growing faster than at any other time. However, many people remain unaware of this fact.
Now the centre is taking its work to the wider public.
It also hopes to ‘break the cycle’ for parents who experienced difficult childhoods themselves.
Palace aides say the idea for the project began even before Kate became a mother.
The Princess explains in today’s letter that ‘as a society, we currently spend much more of our time and energy on later life.
‘I am absolutely determined that this long-term campaign is going to change that.’
An open letter from HRH The Princess of Wales: Think back to when you were young – it really is a time like no other
I am delighted to reveal that the Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood will launch a major new awareness-raising campaign, highlighting the critical importance the first five years of our lives have on shaping the adults we become.
During our very early childhood, our brains develop at an amazing rate – faster than at any other time. Our experiences, relationships, and surroundings at that young age, shape the rest of our lives.
It is a time where we lay the foundations and building blocks for life. It is when we learn to understand ourselves, understand others and understand the world in which we live. But as a society, we currently spend much more of our time and energy on later life. I am absolutely determined that this long-term campaign is going to change that.
It will start by highlighting how we develop during early childhood and why these years matter so much in terms of shaping who we become. I will be joined by a remarkable group of experts spanning science, research, policy making and front-line practice as well as an exciting group of well-known faces from music, sport and television, to show all of us, why it is in all of our interests to care about this.
We all need to know the critical importance of our early childhood. They really are years like no other in our lives. I urge everyone reading this, to take the opportunity to learn more about this incredible time of life, to think back to your own childhood and how it shaped you, and most importantly, to ask yourselves what you can do to make the world a more supportive and loving place for our children.
Because healthy, happy children shape a healthy, happy future.