The Duchess was in a new dress for an engagement at Shout, the mental health text messaging service.
She was there to commemorate the service’s one-millionth conversation with those seeking mental health support.
The Duchess met clinical supervisors, volunteers, and fundraisers while at the firm’s Notting Hill offices. Below, chatting with volunteers Alexis (c) and Angus(r). Alexis began volunteering at the start of the pandemic and has had more than 250 conversations with people contacting the organization. Angus is one of Shout’s very first volunteers; he has provided more than 1,000 hours of support to people in distress.
Shout notes that its volunteers “are often the first person our texters have ever spoken to about how they are feeling, and they work to take someone in distress to a calmer place.” In a social media post following her visit, the Duchess said, “Having met some of the incredible volunteers today to hear their stories and see how they facilitate conversations, it’s obvious how their empathetic approach helps people feel safe, calm and listened to…”.
She heard about the ways data from the service’s first million conversations will help the organization “better understand the scale of the nation’s mental health needs and experiences.”
The Duchess also saw a live demonstration of the Shout platform from Clinical Supervisor Nisha Lar-Warburton. The Duchess spent time with people who have raised funds for the service. Here you see her chatting with Leo Street, a 13-year-old Scout, who raised £8,000 by sleeping outdoors in a hammock for a year.
More from Robert Jobson’s story for The Evening Standard.
Kate met Leo Street, 13, and called the teenager “an inspiration” after he braved temperatures as low as minus five to raise money for the charity.
During a visit on Wednesday, the duchess joked: “There really isn’t a big enough Scout badge for that. What you achieved is really inspiring.”
Back to The Evening Standard piece:
“You must have had some impressive kit to keep warm,” she said. Leo, from Swanley, slept under a heavy-duty tarpaulin to shield from the extremities of the weather.
Leo told the Duchess his next fundraising endeavor will be a bike ride to Scotland.
The Duchess clearly enjoyed speaking with him.
Rhiannon Mills of Sky News shared a video.
How’s this for inspiring on a chilly day. Leo Street who just met the Duchess of Cambridge is 13 & slept in a hammock in his garden every night last year to raise money for @GiveUsAShout the mental health text line,he struggled himself when moving from primary to secondary school pic.twitter.com/ifHQ1p8TJ1
— Rhiannon Mills (@SkyRhiannon) January 26, 2022
You may remember Shout’s launch in 2019. Below, the Duke and Duchess at a November 2019 event celebrating Shout volunteers.
Danielle Stacey reports in her Hello article that “Use of the platform has jumped by 140 percent since the start of the pandemic, and Kate was told of the need for more volunteers to meet the growing demand.”
Now for our look at what Kate wore today, beginning with her dress by Derek Lam 10 Crosby, a brand we’ve not seen her wear before.
The Sammy Leopard Print Dress (most recently selling at $125.99, originally $525) is crafted of an army-green, black, and brown chiffon in 100% viscose with a polyester lining. The dress features a button-front with bow, unlined sleeves with buttoned cuffs, and a tiered skirt. Many thanks to Emily and Caroline P. Parr for another terrific ID.
Closeups show the front bow, gathers at the back yoke, and the sheer sleeve.
San Francisco native Derek Lam launched his eponymous brand in 2003, adding the 10 Crosby line in 2011. (10 Crosby is the address of the brand’s former headquarters). He folded his higher-end collection in 2019 to focus on 10 Crosby and sold that business to Public Clothing Company in 2020; Mr. Lam is 10 Crosby’s Chief Creative Officer.
Middleton Maven suggests the Duchess wore a belt by ba&sh, the brand’s Betty Buckle design ($135) in black suede. (I digitally lightened the product shots a bit to better show the belt.) The company’s name comes from its two owners, Barbara Boccara and Sharon Krief, who launched the Parisian-based label almost twenty years ago.
She brought back her boots by Ralph Lauren Collection (no longer available), shown below as worn to a previous engagement.
She repeated her ASOS design earrings ($14.50).
The Express reports the Duke and Duchess will be at BAFTA headquarters tomorrow; I’ve not seen confirmation of this. It’s possible only Prince William is going to be there in his role as president of BAFTA. Hopefully, the Express report will be accurate and I will see you tomorrow!
UPDATE JAN 27: Prince William did the BAFTA engagement solo.
The Royal Family Channel offers about 3 minutes of video from today’s engagement.
- The Shout site is here; the organization’s post about today’s visit is here; its Facebook page is here; the Twitter feed is here; an Instagram page is here.
- The Evening Standard’s piece from Robert Jobson is here; Rebecca English’s Daily Mail story is here; The Daily Mirror’s piece by Russell Myers is here.;
- Danielle Stacey’s Hello story is here; Stephanie Petit’s People article is here.