The Duchess of Cambridge has spearheaded a new initiative to bring together British retailers and brands to donate over 10,000 items to baby banks in the United Kingdom.
On Tuesday, Kate delivered supplies to Baby Basics UK in Sheffield. In total, her new initiative will see more than 40 baby banks receive new supplies. Baby banks help new parents who may be living in vulnerable situations to receive items such as bedding, clothing, and the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the necessity for supplies.
In a statement, the Duchess said: “Over recent months, I have heard from families who have been supported by baby banks through the most difficult of times and I have been deeply moved by their stories. Having somewhere to turn to for support is important for all families, and baby banks work every day, up and down the country, to provide immediate, tangible and practical help for parents and carers when they are most in need.
“Baby banks are driven by incredible volunteers, demonstrating the power of community spirit in supporting families and coming together to raise the next generation. Thanks to the generosity of the companies taking part in this initiative, baby banks across the UK will be able to support even more families through this particularly challenging time.”
She also revealed that some of the stories she has heard have made her very emotional, saying during the visit: “I remember a couple of the families I met from King’s Lynn and I went home and literally burst into tears, their stories were so moving. The struggles they have gone through, the bravery they have shown…in extraordinary circumstances. Helping their families through extraordinary times.”
Kate sourced donations from 19 British retailers and brands to donate items to the baby bank, including Bloom and Blossom, Boden, Bramley, Childs Farm, DHL, Green People (Organic Babies), Frugi, John Lewis, JoJo Maman Bebe, Kit and Kin, Kokoso, M&S, Mamas and Papas, Matalan, My Little Coco, Sainsbury’s, The White Company, Tesco, and Trotters.
“We are thrilled to be part of this amazing initiative from the Duchess of Cambridge,” said Baby Basics UK CEO Cat Ross.
In a news release on the Baby Basics UK website, Ross said: “We have never been more important than at this time when we are in the midst of a national crisis. So many more families in the UK will need support of a Baby Bank, some for the first time, and we are committed to doing all we can to support them in a way that restores dignity and values parents and their children.”
During her visit to Baby Basics Sheffield, Kate also chatted with families who have been supported by baby banks.
Baby Basics UK revealed in the news release that the Duchess of Cambridge has made several private visits to their various locations throughout 2020, and revealed that after several visits to the West Norfolk location, she had the idea to solicit donations. She had previously visited the location to pack up Moses baskets with supplies for families.
Other baby bank organisations that have received donated supplies include Little Village and Aber Necessities.
Kate chatted with two mothers supported by Little Village over a video call, and also met with Little Village’s CEO, Sophia Parker, in person.
“We say the currency in this is kindness, this is what this is all about. It’s really special being able to facilitate people to support others. They are often just looking for the opportunity to do something,” Parker said.
Kate added, “It’s about finding new ways of still providing people with the support they so desperately need.”