Great Britain

Kate Middleton’s passion will ‘outlast politicians and scientists’ amid milestone project

The Duchess of Cambridge released the findings from her “5 Big Questions” survey which focused on the early years sector and under 5-year-olds. Dr Xand van Tulleken, together with his twin brother Dr Chris van Tulleken, collaborated with the Duchess’ early years project.

Dr Xand hosted the launch of the online forum ‘What the UK Thinks About Early Years’ on Friday.

Writing in The Telegraph, he spoke about his experience working with the Duchess of Cambridge.

He said the royal had “shaped” the project and became an expert on early years.

Dr Xand wrote: “She is absolutely across the research and the data on early years.

Kate Middleton

Kate Middleton has worked hard to become an “expert” in the importance of early years (Image: getty)

Kate Middleton giving speech

Kate Middleton released the findings from her “5 Big Questions” survey (Image: Twitter/KensingtonRoyal)

“It would be easy for her to sit back and hand it to the experts in the room that day, with all their PhDs.

“But, as we saw, she has worked hard to become an expert herself. That interest in early years will outlast politicians and even scientists.”

The Cambridge’s charity collected views from half a million people in the UK about raising children under the age of five.

The findings showed parents are increasingly worried about feeling cut off from support, especially in more deprived parts of the country.

READ MORE: Kate Middleton admits wanting to ask for help over children's tantrums

Kate Middleton and Prince William

Kate Middleton’s interest in early years came before she had her own three children (Image: getty)

It also revealed that loneliness among parents of young children has “dramatically increased” during the coronavirus pandemic.

In a press release, the report was labelled “a milestone moment” for the Duchess’ “work on the importance of early childhood in shaping the rest of our lives and broader societal outcomes".

Dr Xand described how some people assumed the Duchess’ interest in early years came after she had her own three children.

He said: “In fact it predates their arrival. And as they grow up, she made plain to us, her focus will not simply switch to issues concerning parenting and teenagers.

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Kate Middleton

Kate Middleton “shaped” the project and became an expert on early years (Image: getty)

“She is profoundly passionate about the importance of early years.

“If you start talking publicly about parenting as a member of the Royal family, there is always a danger that people will look, and think: ‘Well, you’ve got lots of money and lots of help; what have you got to tell me about my life?’”

Dr Xand also spoke about how the Duchess was effective at discussing to “the shared experience of parenting”.

He added: “Whatever your background – and to the fact that no amount of money and staff can ever exempt you from the imperative to engage with your children and look after them in the early years.

“In this, she walks a line between not being falsely humble, but at the same time sincerely presenting herself as someone aware of the real challenges of parenting.”

Kate Middleton and Prince William

Kate Middleton’s passion for early years will “outlast politicians and scientists” (Image: getty)

The Duchess gave a speech at The Royal Foundation’s forum on the early years on Friday.

She said: “Over the last nine months, the pandemic has been a worrying time for us all. We have experienced isolation, loss, and uncertainty.

“But in the midst of this crisis, we have also seen huge acts of kindness, generosity and empathy.”

She added: “Over the last decade I, like many of you, have met people from all walks of life. I have seen that experiences such as homelessness, addiction, and poor mental health are often grounded in a difficult childhood.

“But I have also seen, how positive protective factors in the early years can play a critical role in shaping our futures too. And I care hugely about this.”

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