On a sweltering day, the couple visited Luton just north of London to see ground-breaking youth charity and a hospice

By Simon Perry
August 24, 2016 06:45 AM
Neil Mockford/GC Images

Prince William and Princess Kate at the double! The royal couple teamed up to highlight a series of causes close to their hearts on Wednesday.

They visited Luton, about 35 miles north of London, to see special projects for young people and take part in talks about mental health and emotional wellbeing across faith groups in the diverse community.

They arrived first at Luton’s Bute Mills shortly before 11:30 a.m. Kate was in a re-wear of an LK Bennett dress decorated with blue poppies that she was first seen wearing in Australia in 2014.

The mill building re-opened in April 2016, following a $5 million re-fit to provide the new home for national youth charity Youthscape. As well as a youth drop-in center, it is national hub for innovation in youth work, with areas for therapeutic and informal work with young people, and also room to train youth workers and professionals from across the UK.

Touring the building, a key project they saw was an innovative one to support those young people who self-harm. “Alumina” is an online self-referral system – a first step on the road to recovery for some young people, Youthscape says.

The couple also saw CHUMS, a mental health and emotional wellbeing service for children and young people, where they will discuss how the organization supports young people dealing with or affected by suicide.

They planned to meet with representatives from the OM Group, Our Minds Matter (OMM), Luton Council of Faiths and Grassroots, groups which are working together to raise awareness and address stigma in the field of mental health among faith groups and encourage social cohesion.

The visit fits in with their ongoing campaign for mental health, Heads Together, which they set up with Prince Harry.

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William has been focusing a lot on the incidence of suicide among men , while Kate is concerned principally with young peoples’ wellbeing and recently published a message of support for one of her charities’ initiatives saying she wouldn’t hesitate to get expert help for children Prince George and Princess Charlotte over their mental wellbeing.

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Next up for their day-long stay in Luton, is a visit to Keech Hospice Care, where they will meet families, friends and volunteers of the hospice which supports both children and adults.

Keech Hospice Care’s mission is to help children and adults to live pain and symptom free, to spend time with their family and friends and, ideally, stay out of hospital.

Through her work with East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices, Kate has been building up her expertise in the sector and has made speeches on the issues of child hospices at home and abroad and supports fundraising events for the charity.

The day ends at Hayward Tyler Luton, where the royal couple are to present the manufacturing firm with The Queen’s Award for Enterprise (International Trade) and to open their newly built Centre of Excellence. – an example of them stepping in to help support Queen Elizabeth, who’s currently at her summer residence Balmoral Castle.

The company, which has been operating from its current site since the early 1870s, and is the global centre of design and development for its key products, the Boiler Circulating Pump and wet-wound motors. It produced the first submersible motor in the early 1900s, providing units to all the Royal Naval submarine fleet.