To mark Mental Health Awareness Week, The Princess of Wales visited students from St Katherine’s School in Bath on Tuesday, who are supported by the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust.
The Dame Kelly Holmes Trust is a youth development charity founded on the belief that every young person needs a champion. The organisation pairs world class athletes with young people to share their winning mindset and provide coaching and mentoring, helping those who are facing adversity to develop the skills and confidence they need to succeed in life.
Dressed smart-casual in trainers and a blazer, Kate started off the engagement taking on Dame Kelly in a game of bean-bag noughts and crosses.
Competing alongside the students, the Princess was beaten twice. After her first victory, Olympian Holmes celebrated and admitted she was ‘slightly competitive’, to which Kate joked back: ‘You would never have guessed.’
Catherine was also joined by Zara McDermott, who is one of the Shaping Us campaign champions, for the day.
The children from St Katherine’s School in Bristol are taking part in the On Track To Achieve programme, which is delivered by athlete mentor and Paralympic gold medalist, Liz Johnson.
The Princess of Wales heard from the pupils about their experiences and the challenges that they face, and how working with a top-tier athlete has supported them to express their emotions, build resilience, and promote positive mental health.
After displaying her competitive side, the Princess then sat down with the pupils and opened the floor for questions away from the cameras.
Catherine told the group how she had to learn how to be part of the Royal Family and finds herself still learning to this day. She noted how she is still working on her public speaking skills, especially how to project.
Kate also spoke about her own three children and how she can see different qualities in each of them.
After the discussion, Dame Kelly praised the Royal saying that ‘she humanised everything to say not everyone’s perfect. Doesn’t matter what you’ve got, or what you’re perceived to have, as an individual you’re still going to have those insecurities’.
The Princess of Wales has supported the topic of tackling mental health for a number of years, especially that concerning children and parents. She is also patron of a number of charities focused on promoting and providing mental health support to those in need.
Earlier this year, The Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood launched Shaping Us, a campaign led by Her Royal Highness. It aims to transform the issue of early childhood from one of scientific interest to one of the most ‘strategically important’ topics of our time, as people become aware that mental health can affect every aspect of life.