The royal mom attended the annual Fostering Excellence Awards on Tuesday

By Simon Perry Monique Jessen
November 17, 2015 01:05 PM
Ian Vogler/PA Images/Startraks

Princess Kate brought her special magic to an evening celebrating the champions for foster children.

Kate, 33, stepped out to honor three young people at the annual Fostering Excellence Awards in London on Tuesday.

She also received some special gifts: quilts made for her 2-year-old son Prince George and six-month-old daughter Princess Charlotte. The quits were given to her by two boys – Rowan, 7, and Ambrose, 11.

“My, you’ve grown since I last met you,” she said to the young boys, who were at a tea party organized by the charity in January.

The elegant royal wore a cobolt blue fit-and-flare dress by London designer Saloni at the Fostering Network event to commemorate the best of what the fostering community – including families, caregivers and children – have done this year.

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Before presenting the three teenagers – Emily Bowyer, 19, Adam Howlett, 17, and Sian Connolly, 19 – with their awards, Kate stepped on stage to the applause of more than 200 people and spoke briefly.

“I would just like to say how delighted I am to be with you all,” she said. “It’s wonderful to meet so many remarkable and impressive people involved in the incredibly important world of fostering.”

Kevin Williams, the charity’s chief executive, says the three young people receiving honors from Kate “have shown how far determination, a good attitude, and proper support and stability can get you.”

In a statement, he adds, “Sadly, not every young person has a positive start in life, but The Fostering Network, foster carers and all those involved in working with fostered young people throughout the U.K. will continue to strive to make life better for them.”

Kate’s commitment to the charity is part of her ongoing efforts to learn about and highlight the plight of vulnerable children. More than 64,000 children live with 55,000 foster families in the U.K. and, experts say, the youngsters have often have experienced neglect and abuse, or witnessed domestic violence or substance abuse.

On Wednesday, Kate will attend a conference organized by a favorite charity, Place2be, where she will hear about the latest thinking on the role that schools can play in tackling mental health problems early in life.

And on Friday, she and husband Prince William are heading back to their old stomping grounds of North Wales for a day of public duties, mainly focusing on mental health – a recurring theme of the couple’s work this year.