Our new Royal Patron meets children and families from two services in Wales

Posted by / Thursday 23 February 2017 / Events
IMG_7604rs

The Duchess of Cambridge said it was "fantastic to hear the incredible work that's going on here" in Torfaen.

Last year we were thrilled to find out that the Duchess of Cambridge would be taking on the royal patronage for Action for Children.

DuchessCambridge_Pontypool_23

On Wednesday 22nd February Her Royal Highness made her first visit as Royal Patron to two of our services in Wales. She met children, young people, parents and foster carers who we work with and talked to them about the impact Action for Children has had on their lives.

Before her arrival at the first children’s centre in Torfaen, local civic dignitaries, staff and young person Craig waited to welcome her to Wales. Craig said he was “nervous but good and excited” moments before the Duchess arrived. CEO, Sir Tony Hawkhead introduced the pair and Craig told her how Action for Children have supported him.

During her visit to Torfaen MIST, the Duchess of Cambridge met families supported by the service. A group of therapeutic foster carers and birth parents explained how they felt they were “stronger together”. One foster carer described the skills they’ve learned: “the therapeutic tools are like superpowers”.

Before leaving, she managed to squeeze in a quick game of pool with 15-year-olds Connor and Craig.

As the Duchess left, the two girls who had presented her with posies got a big thumbs up from staff and parents. They were so proud.

I firmly believe that every child who needs it should be given the best support at the earliest opportunity.
Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge

The Duchess of Cambridge then travelled to Caerphilly to visit the Family Intervention Team there.

FIT is delivered from a cosy building, with bespoke rooms for individual and group therapy sessions. The Duchess watched one of these sessions from behind a screen.

IMG_7703rs

 

The Duchess also met Jackie Gleed. Since she was supported by FIT herself, she has become an Action for Children volunteer. She ensures parents like her have the best chance to build healthy and loving relationships with their children.

It was clear the team had built a wonderfully supportive community as they all chatted, waiting for the Duchess to finish her visit. They assembled for a group photo and  Emily and Casey, both supported by the service, gave Her Royal Highness two more posies.

Before leaving, The Duchess braved the wind and rain to greet supporters who had waited outside.

Everyone was so proud to have been able to share the vital services provided in Torfaen and Caerphilly with Her Royal Highness.

CEO, Sir Tony Hawkhead said: “The visit has created tremendous excitement. We are very grateful to Her Royal Highness for her continued interest in the vital work we do, not just in Wales, but at our 600 services across the UK. It is challenging work but our passionate and dedicated teams make a profound difference to people every single day. For The Duchess of Cambridge to see our teams in action was very special indeed.”