Kate Middleton Inspires Kids to Spend Time in Nature: 'The Great Outdoors Is an Open Playground'

"Spending time in nature can play a pivotal role in helping children grow up to become happy, healthy adults," the royal mom said in a statement

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge
Kate Middleton. Photo: Matt Dunham/AP/Shutterstock

Kate Middleton loves being outside with her children — and now she’s supporting a nature campaign started by kids just as U.K. schoolchildren kick off their summer vacation.

“Spending time in nature can play a pivotal role in helping children grow up to become happy, healthy adults,” Kate, 37, said in a statement issued Tuesday announcing her support for Backyard Nature, a U.K.-wide campaign started by a group of children from Liverpool.

“The great outdoors provides an open playground for children to have fun and learn lifelong skills – from balance and coordination to empathy and creativity – with their friends, their parents, their carers, or their family members. I hope the Backyard Nature campaign inspires children, families and communities to get outside and engage with nature, wherever they live.”

Matt Porteous/PA

Tuesday’s announcement follows Kate’s own initiative to design a garden at Chelsea Flower Show (it has since moved to Hampton Court Palace), which aligns with her belief that kids thrive best in the outdoors.

She has also fostered that love in her own children, Prince George, who turns 6 on July 22, Princess Charlotte 4, and Prince Louis 1.

The Backyard Nature campaign was inspired by the Eco Emeralds — a group of young environmentalists who have been motivated by recent documentaries like Our Planet and media coverage of climate change.

The group’s website asks young people to sign up online. Users can find their local patch using a map highlighting local green spaces, download useful guides and also discover conservation events happening nearby.

Catherine Duchess of Cambridge
Kate Middleton. Shutterstock

They have also enlisted the support of British supermarket chain Iceland.

“The Eco Emeralds share my belief that the next generation needs to connect with nature and become conservation activists, and their commitment to motivating and enabling others to do this is truly inspiring,” Iceland managing director Richard Walker said. “I strongly believe that children need to know nature in order to want to protect it, and this campaign is about supporting them to do just that. By encouraging children to spend one million hours in their ‘backyards,’ the campaign is committed to truly connecting the next generation with the planet we all need their help to save.”

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