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Duchess of Cambridge raises awareness at cyber-bullying forum

On a gloomy November Wednesday, the Duchess of Cambridge brought cheer to London’s financial quarter in Canary Wharf at a cyber-bullying prevention forum, for her charity Place2Be.

Kate attended a cyber-bullying forum on Wednesday and extended her visit by an hour because she was interested in the issues raised

Kate attended a cyber-bullying forum on Wednesday and extended her visit by an hour because she was interested in the issues raised

The Duchess braved the autumnal winds to attend the school-based mental health charity’s prevention forum. Kate became patron of Place2Be in April 2013, which helps 75,000 children in more than 200 schools from some of the most deprived areas of Britain.

This was Kate’s second engagement in a row, having visited Only Connect with her husband, Prince William, only the day before.

Dressed in an Orla Keily black pleated skirt and a black MaxMara jacket, Kate’s visit was to help raise awareness of cyber-bullying, increasingly problematic for the younger generation with mobile technologies. Chief executive of Place2Be, Bonita Refson, said to Kate: “Thank you for sharing our passionate belief that early intervention in children’s well-being and mental health really does matter.”

Kate was bullied as a child, even leaving Downe House School in Berkshire due to bullying, and so the patronage is close to her heart.

Professor Tanya Byron, an expert who spoke about cyberbullying to the forum said of Kate: “She was very interested in the early years, 0 to five year olds, which I guess is because she’s a new mother but also because she’s interested.”

Kate reportedly said “I hope you’re writing this down.”

“Its not just a fly in and fly out. You can see this means something to her,” added Professor Byron.

R Kelly’s hit ‘The World’s Greatest’ was sung for The Duchess by children from St Edmunds Primary School, Tower Hamlets. She thanked the children and congratulated them on their performance.

According to a royal aide, Kate decided to extend her visit by an hour ‘on the spur of the moment’ because she was so interested in the topics raised and listened to two more talks about self-harm and addiction. The new mum is already a patron of Action on Addiction and so this may explain her interest in staying longer.

No doubt William was with George while Kate was working overtime!

photo credit: Jason Simpson via photopin cc

  • Another wonderful event as patron of Place2Be. I am so glad that Catherine is taking on the subject of bullying, especially cyber bullying. It is an epidemic that is literally killing our young people. Folks don’t realize that words matter & that what you write on line affects people.

    That is one of the reasons I am so adamant that my FB page be free from any negative comments. Even comments that seem innocuous & are defending as “just exerting my right to free speech & expressing my feelings” & may not seem too harsh…if they are negative or critical or make judgments or point out flaws or dislikes in any way, they can affect people…even if that person never reads them. It sends out a negative vibe & makes people feel empowered to join in the negativity.

    And of course it has a proven adverse effect on others who read the comments. All it takes is one of those comments & before you know it you have a whole page of them. Just because we think/feel something, doesn’t mean we have to express it…especially if it might be hurtful to another person.

    The internet is awash with people (mostly adults) making the most vile, & heinous comments about every topic on-line. It is a toxic & destructive behavior & we must stop…and we need to make sure that the next generation, who literally lives their lives on-line, understands that what they write & post & share on the internet has real-life consequences.

    I am SOOO glad that Catherine has made this one of her causes. Bravo to our girl! Of course it would be nice if the media headlines focused on the work she is doing & not that fact that her skirt blew up a little. Sigh. Anyway, let’s focus on the events of the day! xo lulu

    • micmac

      Yes, I’m glad, too, about the Duchess’ interest in antibullying. Also, Royal Central ought to be commended for the sort of informative and non-sensationalist article explaining about Catherine’s visit to Place2B, which I only wish that other newspaper sources would emulate.

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