Children’s mental health has long been an important cause for Kate Middleton, and now the royal has found a new way to bring attention to the issue with a bedtime story.
The Duchess of Cambridge is scheduled to make an appearance on a special edition of the popular British kid’s program CBeebies Bedtime Stories, which features a different celebrity reading a bedtime story every week. Guests in the past have included stars like Reese Witherspoon, Chris Evans, Sir Elton John, and Dolly Parton. Kate’s episode will air on February 13, marking the conclusion of Children’s Mental Health Week which began on February 7.
In a promotional shot from the show, the royal is dressed casually in a chunky turtleneck sweater and jeans, choosing to read aloud from The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark by Jill Tomlinson. Her choice in picture book also ties into this year’s Mental Health Week theme of “growing together” as the story is about a baby barn owl who is scared of the dark, but becomes more confident and eventually overcomes his fear with the help of friends.
“I couldn’t be more proud to have The Duchess read a CBeebies Bedtime Story as we mark the 20th anniversary of our CBeebies and CBBC channels,” Patricia Hidalgo, the director of BBC Children’s and Education, said in a statement. “It’s such a special and relevant tale and perfectly represents this years’ Children’s Mental Health Week theme. I can’t wait to see her deliver her own take on such a classic story and I’m sure our audience can’t either.”
Mental health, particularly amongst young people, is at the center of many of the royal’s charitable initiatives. She is currently the patron of Place2Be, a children’s mental health charity and, last year, she launched The Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood. This is a foundation that her and her husband Prince William founded to “raise awareness of why the first five years of life are just so important for our future life outcomes, and what we can do as a society to embrace this golden opportunity to create a happier, more mentally healthy, more nurturing society.” Kate will also travel to Denmark later this month for a series of events on behalf of the center.
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