This week the Princess of Wales has once more been championing the importance of mental wellbeing, sharing the message at a craft lesson in east London.
This was all in aid of Children’s Mental Health Week, a relatively new but important event that helps children understand their feelings and how to process them.
At the end of her session with St John’s Church of England Primary School in Bethnal Green, Catherine said: “Keep talking about your feelings and keep asking others how they’re doing and helping them to talk about their feelings as well.
“I’m a firm believer in giving children the skills that they need for life and focusing on their social and emotional development.”
Last week, Kate launched her Shaping Us campaign, an ambitious project described as her “life’s work” and aimed at raising the profile of the early years development of children.
Her official Instagram account includes the statement: “While our first five years are crucial to shaping who we become, the continued importance of connecting with others and prioritising mental health is vital in laying the foundations for healthy, happy adults.”
Her visit was the beginning of a busy week for royal activity in the East End, with the King set to visit Brick Lane and the University of East London on Wednesday.
What is Children’s Mental Health Week?
The initiative was founded by Place2Be in 2015 with the aim of building awareness and understanding of mental health issues.
In 2023, it will run from February 6-12 with the theme of “let’s connect”. Place2Be said it focuses on the importance of making meaningful connections with others to support our mental wellbeing. “We are encouraging people to connect with others in healthy, rewarding, and meaningful ways,” it said.
The charity said 78 per cent of the young people supported last year felt socially anxious but, with support, two-thirds of those with severe difficulties saw an improvement in their mental health.
Catherine Roche, chief executive of Place2Be, added: “We are delighted to have the support of our royal patron HRH The Princess of Wales to help shine a spotlight on the importance of supporting mental health from an early age.
“As the children of St John’s Primary have shown, taking part in activities and having positive conversations that help us connect with others make us feel so much better. This Children’s Mental Health Week we are encouraging everyone to make time to connect.”