The Duke and Duchess have been doing video calls this week.
On Wednesday, they called volunteers from two organizations, Conscious Youth, which is based in West Yorkshire, and then Machynlleth Community Corona Response in Wales. The calls were made as part of the annual Volunteers Week effort in the UK, held June 1 -7.
Founded in 2016, Conscious Youth is an “award-winning social enterprise that is led by young people for young people!” The charity supports people aged 8 – 24, helping them turn their visions and aspirations into action, while also working to enhance their emotional resilience. The organization’s projects and programs include a youth group, social action, creative arts, fundraising, culture sharing, community engagement, and personal development workshops. The activities and events are planned and led by young people.
During their call, Kate and William heard from two of Conscious Youth’s volunteers who talked about the impact volunteering has had on them. They also spoke about ways they have adapted their work to accommodate changes created by the pandemic.
The Duchess asked if there were common themes in the types of help they are asked for and volunteers talked about the requests for mental health support.
More about the conversation from Richard Palmer’s story in The Express:
William, who has a degree in geography, admitted that some of Prince George’s coursework has proved daunting at times. “I struggle with Year 2 maths,” he said.
Sophie Simpson, 38, who co-founded Conscious Youth with Serena Johnson, 35, said: “We were talking about the struggles of teaching at home. Both Serena and I are parents as well and I guess we totally understood their saying: we can’t teach maths and English like they do at school.
“The Duke and Duchess totally agreed that teaching Year 2 maths was very difficult. I could agree with them because I teach that as well and I’m struggling.”
A volunteer also explained that many of the young people that come to Conscious Youth for assistance end up returning to the organization to work as volunteers. The volunteer talked about the reward of seeing clients develop enough confidence to return as volunteers.
The couple also spoke with Machynlleth Community Corona Response in Wales (MCCR). The organization has 120 volunteers and is one of many mutual-aid groups that have sprung up throughout Wales in recent months to help offer support to those impacted by COVID-19.
Prince William told the volunteers:
It’s National Volunteering Week and I want to say a big thank you from both of us. Thank you for all the volunteering you’re doing, thank you for all the time and effort you’re putting in. It’s been hugely rewarding and important that you guys are doing that and you have been a lifeline to all the people who you’ve helped in the area.”
During the call, you can hear the Duchess say:
One of the things that would be amazing is if everyone in their communities was to carry on and still celebrate volunteering in a way that they have been during the pandemic. Everyone’s got something to give back.
The couple also learned some of the group’s other efforts, like a phoneline service that helps those needing help with shopping, picking up prescriptions. They also facilitate referrals to local befriending groups. The Duke and Duchess met Lynda, a 91-year old who reached out to the MCCR for support and Sadie, the volunteer who has helped Lynda while she has been self-isolating. Here you see Sadie and Lynda.
Kate and William heard from volunteers about ways the group is helping; they are making 3-D printed visors, scrubs and facemasks, and also growing produce for meals that are cooked and delivered to those in need.
We return to The Express story:
Kate told volunteers Kim Bryan, Sadie Maund, Katie Hastings, and Martin Kemp that she has been planting seedlings at home with George, six, Charlotte, five, and two-year-old Prince Louis after hearing that local children had been given free seed packs to grow their own food.
William seemed baffled by some of the shortages that have occurred during the crisis. “Can any of you explain to me why all of us were bulk buying toilet roll?” he asked.
Kensington Palace notes the Duchess has taken part in ‘check-in and chat’ calls with people in vulnerable situations, or those self-isolating. As we mentioned last week, this effort is part of the Royal Voluntary Service’s NHS Volunteer Responders scheme, created to support the NHS and those must vulnerable to Covid-19.
The Palace also reports big news about Prince William: he has been volunteering for Shout, the crisis text line launched last May. The Duke is now trained to volunteer in that capacity. Below, William telling Shout Volunteers about his new status during the video call the Duke and Duchess did with them a few weeks ago. You can see the reactions on some of the faces.
He is now one of more than 2000 Crisis Volunteers.
You can see the Prince telling everyone the news at the top of this video, which also has clips from the calls made this week. You will hear him say, “I’m going to share a little secret with you guys but I’m actually on the platform volunteering.”
— The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (@KensingtonRoyal) June 5, 2020
Volunteers need to commit to 25 hours of online training and then fulfill 200 total hours of volunteering; that’s 2 – 4 hours volunteering per week. Visit this page on the Shout site to read more about volunteering. Below, Shout’s Tweet a few minutes ago sharing the news.
And here is the full 8-minute tape of the most recent calls.
Now for our look at what Kate wore on this week’s calls.
It appears the Duchess brought back her Mabel Shirt (£255) by MiH Jeans, a broderie anglaise piece in 100% cotton featuring scallop trim on the neck and puffed sleeves.
We first saw the style when the Duchess unveiled her Back to Nature Garden at the Chelsea Flower Show last year.
(I added some broderie anglaise shirts to the RepliKate Tops page. They do not have the softly scalloped details Kate’s shirt has, but they would probably work if you are looking for a basic white cotton eyelet top.)
It looks like the Duchess *may* have been wearing her Twisted Circle Drop Earrings (£5) by UK retailer and royal favorite Accessorize. The style is 100% brass and measures about 3/4″ long. Below, you see them as worn on another occasion.
They were first noted in March when Kate wore them to a reception at Ireland’s Museum of Literature in Dublin.
As far as future engagements go, Rebecca English of The Daily Mail reports via Twitter:
Sources also say William & Kate want to try and resume visits in person as lockdown is slowly lifted. ‘We are looking at ways we can do physical engagements in the future in line with Government guidance,’ I’m told. The biggest issues are crowds and pressure on police resources
In a ‘normal’ year, tomorrow we would all be looking forward to the Queen’s Birthday Parade, also called Trooping the Colour. Below, an image from last year’s celebration, the first time all three Cambridge children took part.
The event was canceled because of circumstances created by the coronavirus situation. However, it turns out the day *will* be marked, but on a much smaller scale. More from The Telegraph’s Hannah Furness.
The Queen’s official birthday will be celebrated at Windsor Castle with a Royal Salute from the military, replacing Trooping the Colour after it was cancelled during the coronavirus pandemic.
The Welsh Guard and massed Bands of the Household Division will lead a small celebration at Windsor Castle, where the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh are staying in isolation.
The ‘small, brief’ event will be put on by Welsh Guards members already stationed at Windsor. Royal Central reports, “it’s been confirmed that the event will be shown on BBC One, starting at 10.30 am on Saturday, June 13th. The programme will be presented by Huw Edwards.”
This photo is from the 2018 celebration.
If I see any links on ways to watch the video I will add them to Facebook and here in the post.
If you haven’t already voted in the ‘Ultimate Favorite 2019 Dress Poll,’ pop over to the previous post and cast your vote by clicking here!
- Learn more about Conscious Youth at the organization’s website here; the group’s Facebook page is here; its Twitter feed is here and Instagram page here.
- Visit the Shout site here; the organization’s Instagram page is here, and Twitter feed here.
- For our look at all of Kate’s Trooping the Color ensembles through 2018, click here.
- Richard Palmer’s story for The Express is here; Hannah Furness’s article for The Telegraph is here; Robert Jobson’s Evening Standard coverage is here; The Guardian’s article is here; a Mail Online piece is here;
- Erin Hill’s People article is here; Hello’s piece by Emily Nash is here; a Town and Country story is here