Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Kate's New Patronage & Her Charities Thus Far

Kensington Palace has announced that the Duchess of Cambridge has taken on another patronage - for a new sailing charity The 1851 Trust.


Supported by Ben Ainslie Racing, the trust hopes to inspire and engage a new generation through sailing and the marine industry, providing young people with the skills and training to become innovators of the future.

Ben Ainslie Racing

The trust has been launched in tandem with Olympic gold medallist Sir Ben Ainslie's bid to enter a team in the America's Cup in 2017 to bring the trophy back to Britain for the first time since 1851. Kate supported the bid at a reception in June and had scheduled an engagement to visit the team base last week, but had to cancel due to suffering from Hyperemesis gravidarum. One expects the Duchess had hoped to announce the good news at that event.


In a statement released by the Palace, Kate spoke of her love of sailing and her delight at playing a role for the fledgling organisation:

'I'm delighted to be royal patron of the 1851 Trust. I feel very fortunate to have enjoyed sailing from a young age and I know it is a great way of providing young people with the opportunity to developed skills and confidence. 
It is a hugely exciting time for sailing as the British Challenger bids to bring the America's Cup back to Britain. I am looking forward to being part of this journey and I hope that through the 1851 Trust we can engage and inspire a new generation into sailing along the way.'

Ben Ainslie has reported Kate is keen to take "a very active role" in the trust and was "itching to get out on the water". No doubt we'll see the Duchess attend several events in association with the bid over the next couple of years.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Official Website

Kate's love for sailing stems back to her childhood. During her gap year she got a job as a deckhand on a sailboat which involved long days beginning at 6.30 a.m. and physical work. Tasks included everything from waiting tables, chatting to guests and ensuring they felt comfortable, to cleaning the boat and helping get the sails down. Impressive social skills were an essential part of the £40-a-day job.

Mail Online

It is the first patronage announcement for Kate since January 2013 and in many ways an obvious selection for the Duchess. We know Kate thoroughly enjoys sailing and is a keen sportswoman. At sporting engagements, we regular see Kate participate whether it be hockey, volleyball or cricket.

Clarence House

Indeed, supporting sport is arguably going to become a specific area for Kate. The couple's official website has added a page dedicated to Kate's interest in sport.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Official Website

The announcement brings Kate's total number of solo patronages to eight. The Duchess also shares two joint patronages with the princes. In January 2012, Kate's first chosen charities were confirmed by the palace. The choices concentrated on utilising her art history degree and working with children. The first of these - East Anglia's Children's Hospices is one you all will be familiar with.  The organisation supports families and cares for children with life-limiting conditions.

EACH

Action on Addiction was considered a very interesting choice for the Duchess and at the time it was very much thought this may become an area we would see Kate champion similarly to William's work with conservation and Harry's dedication to military charities. The organisation helps people with addiction problems through prevention, treatment, support and rehabilitation.


The Art Room is an Oxford based charity aimed at helping 5 to 16-year-olds experiencing emotional and behavioural difficulties. They currently have five schools and offer art therapy as a means of helping to increase children's self esteem and sense of independence.


The National Portrait Gallery was an obvious choice for art history graduate Kate. The gallery holds the most extensive collection of portraits in the world.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Official Website

Kate also officially became patron of The Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry which was established by the princes in 2009 and became fully operational in 2011. The foundation is used as the main vehicle for their philanthropic initiatives focusing on young people, conservation and armed forces.

The Royal Foundation

The Palace confirmed Kate planned to volunteer with the scouts during her spare time in Anglesey. Aides were eager to stress William and Kate wanted to give something back to the isle where they enjoyed their first home together, and the Duchess plans to continuing supporting the scouts across the UK.

UK Scouting

Along with the announcement, St James's Palace released this statement:

'The Duchess of Cambridge considers it an honour to be associated with her patronages and is very much looking forward to getting stuck in. 
Of her four patronages two were selected from letters sent to St James' Palace and the other two through research. Action on Addiction was chosen because, as she visited young people's charities, almost everyone working in the field pointed to addiction as a major problem and she wanted to help highlight that. 
More organisations will follow but she wanted to pick a few she can get involved with on a regular basis.'

Eight months later, the Palace shared news William, Kate and Harry had become joint patrons of 100 Women in Hedge Funds philanthropic initiatives. It is a fundraising arm for professionals in the investment management industry and has supported royal charities Action on Addiction, WellChild and The Art Room.


In April 2013, Kate's next three selections were released following a series of private visits. The Duchess decided to lend her patronage to The Natural History Museum in London, a role whose previous incumbent was Diana, Princess of Wales. Diana was patron until 1993, when she gave up many of her posts following the divorce.

The museum is home to world's largest and most important natural history collection, with over 70 million specimens. The Butterfly Exhibit at the museum proved the perfect backdrop for the first birthday photos of a very special little boy!

Clarence House Twitter Feed

Place2Be is a national charity providing emotional support to children in schools. A spokesman for St James's Palace said that it was through her work with Action on Addiction that the Duchess became interested in the charity rather than any personal experience of bullying (Kate reportedly left Downe House School after two terms because of bullying, moving on to board at Marlborough College). The Duchess' inspiration for choosing the charity came from her belief in increased understanding of the need to intervene early with children.

Place2Be

Kate was inspired to become patron of SportsAid after her role as London 2012 ambassador during the Olympics. The organisation helps teenage able-bodied and disabled athletes to fulfil their potential by funding their training and the cost of travelling to competitions.


Scrolling through the list, there's certainly a nice mix of organisations, combining Kate's interests, education, love of sport and the prominent social issue of addiction, along with the incredibly important role of supporting hospices. It would be excellent to see the Duchess build on these patronages further and continue to support the individual charities both publicly and privately. Thinking ahead, it would be very interesting to see Kate draw on her personal experience and support a pregnancy sickness organisation.

One cannot estimate the value of a royal patronage. I had the opportunity to speak with a key member of staff at an organisation once supported by Diana, and it was mentioned that the charity has been feeling the strain without the media coverage and increased donations it enjoyed during Diana's time. 

It's always wonderful to have a post dedicated to charitable endeavours. Learning about them and their work remains one of my favourite aspects when writing this blog. What do you think of Kate's latest patronage selection and her choices thus far?

75 comments:

  1. What a great post. I'm glad that Kate is allowed to choose her own patronages instead of the Palace telling her what to do. She has a chance to play to her strengths.

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  2. Great summary. Thank you, Charlotte. I'm not surprised at this announcement. She does have a nice mix of charities to support.

    As others here have mentioned, I do wish she would take on HG. It would be similar to when Diana addressed the issue of eating disorders.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqNI9aRUb3k

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  3. Excellent, informative post. I learned several things here. The quotes from their household about Kate's choices etc. were interesting, hadn't heard them before. Hope that Kate takes on more patronages involving adults in need. (not just more patronages involving children/sports/art)

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    1. Jane, if more children were involved in sports that teach them discipline and pride, and inspire them with self-confidence then maybe there would be fewer adults in need. Not everyone has the gift of visiting sick and dying people like Diana did. Let Kate does what she does best and she will thrive. It seems to me that her patronages will make a difference in the lives and futures of the children they touch.

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    2. Exactly right, Anon 11:01. Especially your first statement.

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    3. anon from Leominster17 October 2014 at 01:23

      Agree with you, Jane and many thanks for your comments in the last post. Glad you are back. Your comments are always thoughtful.

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    4. But, there are adults in need for various reasons, not necessarily because they didn't have sporting opportunities when children. I feel that she needs to engage with a broader spectrum of society. One can engage with adults in need without having to visit the sick and dying. I applaud that she is the Patron of 'Action on Addiction' but hope that she becomes involved with other charities benefitting adults. Many of these charities would enormously benefit from having a royal patron, or just a royal visit.

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    5. Sarah from Calif.17 October 2014 at 01:44

      Anon 11:01, so agree with you.
      Also Kate is involved with Action on Addiction and other adult programs. So agree with the idea of helping young children before they reach adulthood and have to face many pressures. I can name the people who helped me as a child to face the world as an adult.

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    6. Thank you, Anon from Leominster! Like you, I remember the time that Diana married, so I've seen the actions/activities of the British Royal Family over a few years now.

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  4. While bringing a sailing cup to Britain is a nice thing, I think there are worthier organizations. It's not like yachtsman of that caliber are hurting for money.

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    1. I think there's more to it than that, bluhare. What about national pride...or just encouraging a very techy generation to get off their backsides?

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    2. Maggie - Minneapolis16 October 2014 at 05:44

      I tend to agree, bluhare. To be honest, I don't know much about sailing in Britain, but it's not a very accessible sport in the United States, and to have a "charity" promoting it seems to go against the point of charities (or I guess what I see as the point of charities). Sports are a fine focus, but it seems like sailing is one of the hardest/worst ones to try and get anyone hurting for money involved in. It also seems like a bad PR move - just adds to the recently developing idea that she and William are not as down-to-earth and "normal" as they seemed at the beginning of their marriage. Not saying I agree with this - but just a thought. There are already so many accusations of her being another Marie Antoinette because of all of the renovations and kitchens and vacations that I feel like her becoming the patron of a charity for what is traditionally seen as a sport for rich people is not going to help. Again, not what I think, but what I think that other people are going to think. I know my posts have been anti-Kate lately, but I think that it's great she took on another cause. Just wish that she used her position to do something more meaningful, but then again, I obviously shouldn't be the arbiter of that.

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    3. Where the money is likely to go is in engineering for yacht design and building - techy professions - they aren't looking for sailors, they are looking to compete against the American engineering and the Silicon Valley money - the techy professions. Good luck with that. Seriously. The current winner of the America's Cup - bought 98% of a Hawaiian Island with the change in his pocket. Oddly enough the American yacht was captained by Sir Ben Ainslie. I agree it is all about rich people's egos. Same as Formula One Racing, Horse Racing, Carriage Racing, and Polo.

      The interesting thing about the youth programs that Kate is involved in is that none of them lead to professions where the children can make a living. It seems to me she is basically promoting her childhood experiences - ones that she had in a privileged upper class home - where having to provide for yourself in the future was not a concern. If Kate is left in charge of the UK you'll end up with generations of hungry artists who are good at sports, battling alcohol addictions because they can't find jobs. If you listen to all the announcements of these patronages you get the impression that UK youth have quite the self esteem problem. Is it because they live in an aristocratic society with class distinctions?

      I tease. Kate does about a dozen charity appearances a year - 12 in 2012, 13 in 2013, 5 in 2014 and with two kids under the age of five and moving to the country there is no way she'll make a significant impact on the UK youth of tomorrow. If we see a generation of girls jumping around in high heels, we'll know I was wrong.

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    4. Rebecca - Sweden16 October 2014 at 09:00

      I kind of agree Bluhare. BUT, she is not the patron of the sailing team. She is the patron of the accompanying foundation that wants to teach kids about sailing and other maritime things. And that is a fully different thing I think. If it was the team that got her patronage I would have agreed.

      This is from their webpage:

      The 1851 Trust aims to inspire and engage a new generation through sailing and the marine industry, providing young people with the education, skills and training to become innovators of the future, and stewards of the marine environment."

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    5. Indeed Royalfan, there is a great deal more to it than that. The 1851 charity aims to give young people the chance to learn to sail, but also the opportunity for apprenticeships in boat building and design.
      Sir Ben Ainslie may be wealthy now(really don't know whether he is or not), but in his early days he was able to sail because his parents made sacrifices to allow him to do so.
      Helping young people to help themselves fits very well with many of the charities supported by Catherine, as well as William and Harry---not to mention those of the Prince of Wales.
      Portsmouth has suffered in recent years when most of the ship- building for the Navy has gone to Scottish yards, for obvious political reasons. There are Government plans to try to find other uses for the Portsmouth Dockyards, which is why this charity had received public money.
      Catherine still has to look for charities which do not involve treading on the toes of other royals and this seems to me to be a well worth one for her to support.

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    6. Nothing wrong with national pride, royalfan. Nothing at all. And I know the focus isn't necessarily on bringing money. Awareness is good.

      But with all the organizations she could attach her name to -- and I know she likes sailing -- she picks one populated with elite white people? I don't think this is a bad cause; I guess I thought things like this would come when she had more entries on her resume. You know, the whole Caring Kate thing.

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    7. Lynn Georgia USA16 October 2014 at 14:25

      I agree with royalfan about fostering national pride and encouraging people to abandon the sedentary life. However, I must admit that my initial reaction was similar to Bluhare's. Then, I clicked on The 1851 Trust link (provided by Charlotte). My whole attitude changed when I discovered the broad and worthy objectives of the charity, including inspiring young people of diverse backgrounds to become interested in the sport of sailing, encouraging interest in marine related professions (in this "sceptered" island nation!), and educating all to be worthy stewards of the marine environment.

      Even so, even though I am an ardent Anglophile, I remain a patriotric American, too, so I'll still be pulling for the US in the America's Cup. Sorry, Kate, Charlotte, royalfan! (-:

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    8. I agree- I think this is pretty elitist and a bit unnecessary. In my opinion, some of my favorite Duchess moments are when she's not having a blast at visits for her patronages, but when she shows her compassion (think of her visits to the hospice centers). To me, it's getting old where it looks like she's just having fun.

      I know I'm probably in the minority opinion- so sorry if I've offended anyone. I still love the Duchess, but I think it's natural to find flaws as well.

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    9. The education and professions the foundation will be cultivating are for making boats for rich people to race. It depends where you are on the economic earnings line whether you find that exciting or depressing. Those who have noted the elitist slant to the whole thing are astute. Of course, no one is forcing anyone to participate in the program so those that want the opportunity will self select into the sailing world - whether for true passion for the sport or just a way to make a living.

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    10. A commenter raises a good point about what issues Kate can realistically take on - given that the arena is flooded with royal family members already in play. For instance, one might think that given where Kate is in her family life she would make a great patron for the National Literacy Trust since she will be working with her own children to read very shortly - and reading to children has been shown to increase literacy. However, there is already a royal patron installed there - Camilla. She can't work with another similar charity because that would draw attention away from the NLT - they would never get any exposure. You can't really suggest to a senior member that they step away from the NLT so a junior member can take over and shine the spotlight there. What other royal family members do may impact what Kate is able to take on. As the newest adult member of the family - she can't throw shade on another's efforts.

      Still, it seems to me that Kate picks charities that reflect herself (sports,arts), rather than looking outwards and focusing on the needs of others. The only one without an obvious link is children's hospice. Every family has addiction whether it is public or not.

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    11. To dismiss this as elitist is to ignore the big picture. This isn't about enticing rich people to sail. Royals take on all sorts of patronages. Some deal with more controversial issues while others may be seen as being "fun". At this stage of the game, I don't see her Kate taking on anything like landmines. (Pardon the pun here, but the royals are trying to avoid them.) On the other hand, some of the patronages deal with serious issues. It's a good mix in my opinion.

      When William and Kate got engaged, people were speculating about her future role and expressing hopes that she would be able to remain true to herself and not have every decision made for her. Well, here she is associating herself with causes that she has an interest in or can relate to and it's *still* not good enough.

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    12. royalfan, no one says that they all must have Very Serious Patronages, but Kate has 9, including the National Portrait Gallery, another not-exactly-a-charity one. And no one said anything about that as it made sense due to her degree, and also because she chose it out of the gate and I think some of us thought she'd ramp up as she got used to things. That hasn't happened. If anything, she's ramped down. And she hasn't announced any new patronages in quite some time and the first one is this. It doesn't look good, and I think she's getting bad advice.

      Although in my big picture, Ainslie is hot.

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  5. Nice surprise to have a post today. While not a surprise that this is a new patronage, I never thought that the words "sailing" and "charity" would occur together in this context. I like the additional page about The Duchess and Sport. That does focus on her interests and strengths. Personally, I would like to see her do more with Action on Addiction and substance abuse.

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    1. Rebecca - Sweden16 October 2014 at 09:05

      Many people hoped she would take addiction as her "main"-focus. I actually think she in some way will land on something involving helping and empowering children. Most of her charities in one way or another tries to help children. I think that fits her strengths and we already see a pattern towards that. You can see that she is really good and natural talking to children so I think it could be a nice fit for her. Maybe starting some scholarship? Or camp? Time will tell!

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  6. Marci from Salt Lake16 October 2014 at 03:49

    I like the nod to centuries of British heritage in this sailing-related patronage. I also like that she is connecting to her own past, meaning her gap year, and to a continuing love of this sport. And I love the photo you chose, Charlotte, of Kate acknowledging her victory over William in the race.

    I too think it would be lovely of her to adopt a pregnancy-related illness organization as its patron, whether HG specifically, or an organization dedicated to research and treatment and cures for all pregnancy-related illnesses.

    It is great to see again a list of all her patronages. This kind of coverage is crucial for them to stay in the spotlight when she cannot otherwise directly shine her light on them.

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    1. Something HG related that addresses mothers who dont have help or daycare options or close family for support
      would be great. Just seems the sailing thing does not take much effort or thought. It may interest her but what is the point? How does that connect with the spirit of a chariity?

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  7. I'm with bluhare and SkyKing regarding the oddity of sailing and charity being in the same boat together (pun intended).
    It is nice, and I'm sure the kids involved will benefit somehow as Kate's press statement has noted, but sailing yachts is for the wealthy - yachts are *expensive*! And the America's Cup is obscene in its expense. I am from NZ and watched our yachtsman compete and lose in the last moments of the most recent competition. The fallout from the result was gross. I don't care about the result (the racing was good to watch) but the aftermath here clearly showed what a rich man's game it all was. As a way of future-proofing the young, it seems odd and, frankly, I think Kate could put her powers for good to something a little higher.

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    1. Well said. The purpose of the charity is to fund a pathway for the rich to find talented folks to help them win. It has nothing to do with helping the individuals themselves work towards self-actualization.

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    2. Sarah from Calif.17 October 2014 at 02:01

      Maryland Moxie, I think your over stating the Silicone Valley and it's sailors. I live 45 mins from there and rarely do we here the sailor news. Let the rich enjoy their hobby. So Kate enjoys sailing and it encourages kiddos. Good for her :)

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    3. Hi leafy! Long time no see!

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    4. Oh, in case anyone is still reading this thread... Sarah, the Golden Gate Yacht Club which currently holds the America's Cup has 300 members. These are made up of the rich people with money made from Silicon Valley. The point being made is that sailing is a pursuit for a certain income type, with the time on their hands to buy and maintain a boat and then sail it. They don't necessarily care if the average person is following the sport because the sponsorship is corporate and not dependent on ticket sales attendance. Incidentally, the "sailing capital of the world" happens to be right here in Maryland - Annapolis, which is also home to the US Naval Academy. It's also important to remember that sailing, especially the America's Cup, isn't about the sailor, but about the engineering of the boat -- this is similar to horse racing, and is the opposite of a sport like tennis, where a person is the "object" competing (and not the rackets they are using to hit the ball). I never said the rich couldn't enjoy their hobby - but I agree with those that see the incongruity of using the word "charity" for professions in the field. It is the same as setting up hospitality scholarship funds for future butlers and maids - it serves a class of people and does not empower an individual to self-fulfillment.

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  8. Seems like an odd choice to me and I actually do sail! Sailing is very much a wealthy pastime, at least in Britain. I also wouldn't consider it a national pastime; Football and Rugby are much more popular. Why would you want to encourage more people to take up sailing? Very few people can afford to sail and most live in big cities anyway nowhere near water. Why can't she tackle worthier causes, like FGM or the housing crisis, both of which are major issues in Britain right now?

    Honestly, I'm a Royalist but the more time goes on the snobbier the RF are getting. Thousands of children in London alone are living in poverty, and they're concerned about increasing the awareness of such an elitist sport. Give me a break.

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    1. Sarah from Calif.17 October 2014 at 02:04

      Sabby_00,
      I'm not rich and live 20 minutes from the ocean. I could afford a sail boat if it was my passion. Why exclude people who enjoy sailing?

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    2. There's sailing and there's what these people do.

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    3. You can't compare the standard of living in California to that in the UK, Sarah from Calif. Most people here, especially in London, are barely able to afford their mortgages and rent, let alone take up sailing even if it was a passion. There's a housing crisis going on in the UK at the moment. I get that the Duchess can't be expected to solve these issues, but she should at least help bring awareness to everyday, Middle-Class issues. It's getting to the point where we can't relate to the RF anymore and, if we can't relate to them, what is the point of even having a Royal Family?

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    4. SO true. Sarah take a ride up to Oracle offices off 101 Freeway and in front is either the America's cup vehicle or one of the practice ships. I bet you can't afford to sail that. Bluhare is right there is sailing and there is vehicles like Oracle won with. Sabby makes excellent points. Life is about choices and if the Duchess is planning just a few visits a year they she has to make them more meaningful. Sailing is great if she supported many charities but as part of just a handful it makes her look like she has shallow interests in my opinion. Nancy from California

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  9. Very nice post with new information. Thank you !

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  10. Kristen-Portland16 October 2014 at 15:54

    I love her choices of patronage; they are well rounded and encompass her strengths and interests...with the exception of the sailing. I'm sorry but sailing is a sport that is most often enjoyed by the uber wealthy so I don't understand how you can have a charity for it? Instead of trying to squeeze a patronage out of something that doesn't really need one why can't she just have a personal hobby or interest? It's not a bad thing that she loves to sail, she should be able to particiapte in the sport she enjoys without having to turn it into a patronage or charity. Having a charity for sailing is an oxymoron.

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  11. I agree with a lot of the posters here - having a charity for sailing is an oxymoron. While it's nice to try and bring sailing to kids that otherwise cannot afford to sail, this is a lightweight patronage. Why not take on something more heavy like education, poverty, teen mothers? IF you look at Camilla's patronages they are things that really matter - literacy, rape kits, poverty. These are things that matter to most Briton's - not sailing!

    I know it's not fair to compare Kate to Diana, but Diana really worked for her patronages. When was the last time Kate did anything for Action on Addition, The Art Room or Sports Aid? I really like Kate, but she came into the Royal family with a rep as someone who does work that much, and she has not really done that much to change this opinion. She has so much potential to do great things. Ditto for William, who besides the Malta trip has not really been seen doing much. The Queen must be giving them a lot of room to do what they want, but I am wondering if this is really the best thing. Public opinion will turn if they are not seen.

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  12. Wonderful post Charlotte, thank you. Been a while since I was able to post, had to catch up and read all the past posts. I know that this new patronage of DC is to help children learn to sail, etc, but I have to agree with Bluhare and others on this one. I was actually not really surprised she took this one on, given her involvement with sailing. I just hope that the children do really get something worthy to help them in life, as they say it is supposed to do.

    Has anyone over across the pond heard any rumors flying that the Duchess is pregnant with twins? I was in the grocery store yesterday, and I saw no less than 3 magazines saying that someone close to her leaked out the information. And something about the betting as to what she will have jumped dramatically in one hour, to her having twins. Idk, I didn't buy it, was just curious if things like that are being said there.

    I do wish the Duchess well and hope she gets over this terrible sickness very soon. It is horrible to feel sick like that 24/7. Take care all. Personal shoutout to Bluhare, Royalfan and Leo, hope you are all doing well. Miss being here more often. Again, take care all.

    Jenn

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    1. Hey Jenn, I've been wondering where you are! I always miss you but even more when you agree with me. :)

      I've seen the headlines too, and read that bookies have suspended betting on them too. Doesn't Kate have an old school chum who loves to leak stories about Kate's 38 pregnancies (32 of which are triplets) to the magazines?

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    2. Hi Jenn :) I suspect the "twins" rumor will be around for a few more months. IMO, it's just a way to keep her name in the headlines.

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    3. Hi Bluhare,
      Thank you, I have missed you too! Lol @ the "especially when I agree with you" comment! We do tend to agree, most of the time :). I just read the most recent comments here, and I am still of the opinion that I said before. I really do hope that the children involved get something life-sustaining out of it, but I have my doubts. As you mentioned (I think it was you lol), she is not going to be in any condition to get on a boat anytime soon, maybe not till the new prince or princess is born. It just seems like the timing is kind of off. Idk, maybe I'm wrong. Either way, good to see you again Bluhare! Oh, and perhaps now that it seems that the Duchess went to her 12 week dct appt, for a scan, we will see if those "twin rumors" are true :).

      Hi Royalfan,
      I agree with you completely. Everywhere you turn, there is some magazine with some article about the Duchess. And almost always, they have some "inside information" about her and her pregnancy. I get a kick out of seeing their desperation to sell their magazine, by putting a pic of the Duchess on the cover, and "speculating" about one thing or the other. I learned long ago not to believe anything I see, till I see it here or announced by the palace, end of story. Good to see you again Royalfan.

      Take care, Jenn

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    4. Yes, Jenn, she continues to be featured on the cover of many magazines. Just imagine if she had a full diary? :) That would ruffle a royal feather or two.

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  13. Before you all start running Catherine down, take the trouble to find out exactly what she has attached her name to.
    The Charity is not the race.

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    1. Seeing as I started it, I'll say that I've got no problem if Kate wants to put her name behind a sailing initiative. However, she's only got 9 patronages so far, and in my opinion there are other causes that her name would help who do more to help the less fortunate which, until she builds her patronage portfolio up, I think get her better PR and do more for her image.

      I understand she enjoys sailing and wants to be involved. Although the timing of the announcement is a bit ironic given the fact she probably couldn't step foot on a boat right now. And I do think that an organization that promotes elite yachtmanship and the international competitions in which they compete doesn't exactly fit in a normal person's world. So it seems a bit out of touch to me.

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    2. bluhare, if this pregnancy was a surprise (likely given the Malta tour), I see no reason for this announcement to be postponed.

      As far as the types of patronages she has, well, I suspect the goal is to keep them balanced and non-controversial. And regarding your "normal person's world" comment....ahhh, but she isn't "normal" in that respect, is she? :))

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    3. No it isn't, royalfan; but it is her audience. no?

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    4. bluhare, if you consider the various issues that her charities deal with, the list is far from narrow or elitist.

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    5. I didn't say it was. I said this one is not exactly one that benefits a lot of people.

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  14. Poor Kate. No matter what she does, it's wrong. Never mind that she's new to Royal life and will undoubtedly take on more charities as she ages and the elder set drop their patronages. Never mind that the Queen, the Princess Royal, the Duke of Edinburgh and Zara Phillips all participate in "elitist" horse sports. Think polo is for the common man? Knock the young Princes and Charles off your approved list. But somehow it's only Kate who takes the relentless flak. I think the Royals are doing what Royals always have done, from their exalted and privileged place in society. This new charity seems to do good work. They help create jobs. Britain has a long and noble history on the water. Kate's now part of that. Don't blame her because she's sporty and Diana wasn't.

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    1. All valid points, Greybird.

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    2. Sarah from Calif.17 October 2014 at 02:07

      Graybird K,
      :) agree.

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    3. The rest of them have more than 9 patronages. And I'm more than happy to talk about other royals' hypocrisy . . . and do, although not here. As this site is to talk about Kate.

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    4. anon from Leominster17 October 2014 at 02:51

      I do think it's unfair ---to Philip, the Queen, and Anne! All them have enormous amounts of patronages. Anne particularly, has always taken on extremely worthwhile but not glamourous causes such as carers. All are working full schedules well past retirement age. Philip is 93 and is still involved in many mundane visits. Yes, they were involved in elite sports as hobbies in their younger days and the queen still loves racing and has race horses, but that trio are known primarily for their work with other activities such as Save the Children and the Duke of Edinburgh Awards.

      Zara is a private citizen and raises money for her riding.

      Although this blog is about Kate, I have observed as have others, that William also seems drawn to charitable endeavours where he can have fun, such as polo and flashy parties. He has in the past been known for his work with conservation and the homeless but not much of late. So yes, I include him as well in my comments about involvement in charitable work.

      Diana was extremely sporty. She won awards for diving. She was also a very talented dancer. A few of her patronages reflected her interest in sports and dance but she had so many other charities she wasn't principally known for that. I suspect William inherits his sporting ability, at least with swimming, from her.

      I have no objections to Kate taking on sailing (although it is most decidely a rich man's sport - the amount of employment it brings will be trivial and few underprivilaged children will be able to make careers from it.) It does have a sense of heritage. I just wish Kate would pick up a few more humble and helpful charities as well (or at least broaden her involvement with her present ones.) There are plenty out there that don't have royal patrons and most would be thrilled to have William or Kate involved.

      As for elitist sports, Andrew has been strongly attacked for his involvement with golf,(much less elitist than sailing) even though he does much more charitiable work than William and Kate. So I really don't think it is a case of "poor Kate..."

      Delete
    5. Referring to this as "unfair" implies that the Queen and Charles want her to do more, but she is unwilling to do so. Wouldn't that be ironic for a young woman so many have accused of being so willing to please. If, on the other hand, this is perfectly fine with the Queen and Charles (a far more likely scenario IMO), then it is more a case of some folks may not like it, but it is what it is.

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    6. There are literally 100's of sailing clubs around the UK - on reservoirs, lakes, rivers, and of course on the sea - one thing the UK doesn't have is a lack of water :-) sailing is often thought of as an elitist or rich mans sport and of course it is if you want to buy yourself a super yacht but the kind if sailing that the 1851 Trust supports is dinghy sailing. Kids summer schools are run all over the country from about £100 to £140 for a 2 week "learn to sail" course. The 1851 Trust is absolutely trying to make it more accessible to people who have the mistaken view that it is unaffordable and a rich mans sport and Ben has poured huge efforts into making it reality ... The support by Kate will just help to bring this dream to reality in my humble opinion. Ben's bid to win the Americas Cup is entirely separate from the Trust and I think it's a shame that some folk haven't spent a little more time getting to facts before straight to criticism ..... The Trust is working with inner city kids and has numerous sponsorships on offer - we just seem to have a paradigm that sailing is for the rich. In Australia 1000's sail and learn to sail every year - that is one of Ben's goals to change the publics perception.
      It's a great cause for Kate to support in a country surrounded by water and with endless places inland to sail. Good on Ben and good on Kate!!
      Simone

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    7. anon from Leominster17 October 2014 at 05:29

      Kate has appeared at several engagements with the queen. This doesn't make me think that the queen is encouraging her not to take things on. Kate has also appeared with Charles -- with and without William. So hard to say how the senior royals feel about things but they certainly have not discouraged Kate from appearing sometimes with them.

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    8. Taking whether the Queen or Charles want her to do more off the table for a second (as we won't agree on that one until the end of time or the Queen says something whichever comes first and I'm betting on the end of time) it definitely is what it is. As is my opinion of it. :)

      Did I just actually agree with you? I may have to faint dead away if I did!

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    9. I live on the US Great Lakes. Sailing is for people of various means here, and young people are given lessons by the yacht clubs and sailing enthusiasts. Yes, one can spend a lot of money sailing, or not. There are affordable boats for sale and for rent. I suspect the same is true around the shores of Britain.

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    10. Yes, Kate has appeared with HM and PC and they seem to get on quite well. It's lovely to see such a public stamp of approval. Refreshing considering previous royal chapters.

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    11. I don't know bluhare, *did* you just agree with me? :))))

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  15. Perhaps, I am confused, but isn't Ben a friend of Kate and William. If so, this would make sense and partially add to why she would want to support this charity.

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  16. Sarah from Calif.16 October 2014 at 23:41

    Love Kate's choice of Charities :) and Patronages. Especially Action on Addiction and Girl Scouts :))))

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  17. anon from Leominster17 October 2014 at 00:11

    Just in the last few days there was a report on the "Diana Awards" and the amazing young people who have been honoured the awards with their charity work and anti-bullying efforts. In the past, William has attended and this year he and Harry sent a rather generic message but no royal was present to give the awards to these young people or be photographed with them. What a shame.

    One of the winners had done hours and hours of charity work, even as he held down a green grocers job. I believe the PM is patron of that charity - don't ask me why not one of the princes or Kate.

    For those here who say royal duties are all useless ribbon cutting and tree planting, think how inspirational these young people are, how much difference they have made and wonder why some member of the royal family couldn't have taken a few hours of their day to be there to see them receive their honours. Even as William and Kate only do a little (her- pre-pregnancy) ordinary people who must go to school and earn their keep and still manage to spend hundreds of hours doing charity work.

    Everytime William and Kate deign to appear with a charitiable endeavour - it gives it an enourmous boost. I only wish they weren't so grudging of their time or there were more active young royals to fill in this huge breach. As for Kate, her sailing patronage will give her lots of opportunities to be around boats - but it's better than nothing.

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  18. This 2012 quote from officials "More organisations will follow but she wanted to pik a few she can get involved with on a regular basis."

    This never happened. It looks like they were plans for Catherine "to get stuck in" back then. Wonder where it all went by the wayside.

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  19. Apparently ........ It was on twitter:
    @WWKD_Official: Kate's 12-week scan appointment indicates that she will be due around April 25. Let the #GreatKateWait begin!
    And photos:
    http://m.nydailynews.com/life-style/william-kate-royal-love-story-gallery-1.16247?pmSlide=1.1405470
    Simone

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for sharing the pics!!

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  20. Amy, Detroit Michigan17 October 2014 at 01:10

    I guess I just don't see the issue. It's not like Kate does not patron serious charities. I think her charities are well enough balanced to show things she has a passion for.

    Nice and thorough post, Charlotte!

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    Replies
    1. Sarah from Calif.17 October 2014 at 02:11

      Amy, agree with you!
      Oh spent a week in Upper Michigan this summer. It was gorgeous!

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    2. Amy, Detroit Michigan17 October 2014 at 15:54

      Sarah, thank you! Spread the word....too many people think Michigan begins and ends in Detroit. LOL

      Delete
  21. Considering all the comments touching upon "relevance".......... it's a pity that Kate didn't beat her to it. ;)

    http://artdaily.com/news/28321/HRH-The-Duchess-of-Cornwall-Becomes-Patron-of-The-Fan-Museum#.VEBhOM90z4Y

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  22. Really, must you pick apart everything about Her choices. A woman who is new to the Royal family and suffers from
    A very serious morning sickness problem duriing both of her pregnancies with as much grace as possible. I enrolled
    My son in a sabot sailing program in Long Beach, Calif. I wanted to give him the opportunity to experience the joy of
    Sailing. Several of his friends now rent a boat in a share program and they are in their 50's

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  23. So tired of the same people on this blog saying Kate is lazy and elitist. You excuse it by saying that "I love Kate, but...." Or that it's "just my opinion", but I just think it's mean. This lovely woman is doing her very best to have and raise a young family and make her mark in a complicated family steeped in tradition, protocol and hierarchy.

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  24. Rich people helping their rich friend's. Cant help but feel the presence of nepotism here. "Come on buffy, lets go race our yachts in the harbor" yuck

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