Kate Middleton Gathers Experts at Windsor Castle as She Continues Early Childhood Work
DANIEL LEAL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images Kate Middleton at the Windsor Castle meeting
Kate Middleton is getting some expert help as she takes her campaign for young children to a new level.
The Princess of Wales, 41, met a group of eight professionals from academia, science and the early years sector who she has chosen to add their voices to her early years work. They will offer strategic advice and provide oversight of the work of her Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood, her office at Kensington Palace says.
On Wednesday morning, Princess Kate met them in their role as her Advisory Group for the first time at Windsor Castle.
Palace officials explain that the group — who have expertise in areas across neuroscience, psychology, perinatal psychiatry and policy development — will support Princess Kate and the Centre "as work is accelerated to promote the fundamental importance of the first five years of a child's life."
DANIEL LEAL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images Kate Middleton at the meeting at Windsor Castle
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The group will help Kate's Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood as it commissions new research, learns the best practice in the U.K. and globally and raises awareness of the extraordinary impact the first five years of life have on future outcomes of everyone.
Some of the advisory group are familiar voices in the area and have worked alongside Kate for several years as she built up her experience and expertise and knowledge in the area. Prof. Peter Fonagy is, for example, the head of the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families, which Kate has supported for many years. Eamon McCrory, Professor of Developmental Neuroscience and Psychopathology, University College London, is someone Kate has encountered as she learned about the importance of the brain development on youngsters.
The others are Dr. Alain Gregoire, Consultant Perinatal Psychiatrist and President and Founder of the Maternal Mental Health Alliance; Dr. Trudi Seneviratne, Registrar at the Royal College of Psychiatrists; Ed Vainker, OBE, co-founder of Reach Academy Feltham; Carey Oppenheim, Project Lead at the Nuffield Foundation; Imran Hussain, Director of Policy and Campaigns for Action for Children and Beverley Barnett-Jones MBE, Associate Director at Nuffield Family Justice Observatory and Trustee at What Works in Children's Social Care.
DANIEL LEAL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images Princess Kate at the meeting at Windsor Castle
Amanda Berry, Chief Executive of The Royal Foundation, said in a statement, "Working with such an eminent group of people is an absolute privilege. I know their advice and experience is hugely valued by the Princess, and the whole Centre for Early Childhood team, as we continue to drive awareness of, and action on, the transformative impact of the early years."
"The Advisory Group's support in our key areas of research, collaboration and awareness raising will be invaluable and I look forward to working closely with them to make a difference for generations to come."
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As they met, the palace announced that the Centre will be headed by Christian Guy, who becomes the Centre Director.
Last week, Kate went on a fact-finding trip to a nursery to highlight the work done there. She spoke with early childhood educators about the formative nature of the early years and heard from parents about how the nursery makes a difference in their children's lives.