The Queen and the Duchess of Cornwall will travel together next month to Ilford, Essex for the opening of the new Barnardo’s Headquarters. Her Majesty is Patron of Barnado’s and the Duchess is President.
They will visit the new headquarters on 10 December 2013.
In 2007, Camilla was announced as President of the charity. Her first visit was to High Close School in Wokingham where she met staff and participants. The Duchess has also visited other facilities such as in Leicester and Northern Ireland in 2008.
Barnardo’s began in 1867 when founder Thomas Barnardo decided that the children he saw begging for a meal or sleeping on the streets needed care. His first venture was the Ragged School to help those children in need whom he saw on the streets of East London.
Thomas Barnardo died in 1905, but by that time he had 96 homes that cared for well over 8,500 children. Presently, the charity offers approximately 900 local community services. Their focus is to place children in adoptive homes and foster care.
Last year Barnardo’s “transformed the lives of more than 200,000 of the UK’s most vulnerable children, young people and their families. We helped many more by campaigning to change policy and public opinion,” according to their website.
Barnardo’s has close ties with the royal family. Since 1902 they have had a royal patron, with patrons ranging from Kings to Queens to a Princess. Royal Presidents have been part of the charity since 1923.
Numerous royal events in conjunction with the charity have taken place since members of the royal family have become patrons or presidents. In 1935, 100 children from the charity were in attendance at the silver jubilee of King George V.
Diana, Princess of Wales was President of Barnardo’s from 1984-1996. According to Barnardo’s, Diana was in attendance for more than 110 events.