Kate and William to launch ‘major new flagship initiative’ next year

Kate Middleton and William: Expert discusses 'stress' for family

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Kate and Prince William are expected to launch a “major new flagship initiative” next Spring, which will target homelessness. The Prince and Princess, through the Royal Foundation, are set to run the programme as they focus their charitable work on supporting homeless people, a cause which is close to William’s heart. 

The programme, described as “bold and ambitious”, has not been announced yet, however, the Royal Foundation published a job advert searching for someone to take a leading role in the project.

According to the ad, a ‘Head of Homelessness Programme’ will run the project, which will “support a multi-location collaborative effort to demonstrate that it is possible to deliver lasting change to tackle homelessness”.

The programme seems to be handled with secrecy since potential candidates will have to sign a non-disclosure agreement before accessing more details.

A candidate for the role should have “excellent political judgment and risk awareness”, among others, and could receive a salary of up to £85,000 a year.

At the age of just 11, Prince William visited a homeless shelter with his mother, Princess Diana.

Since then, he has expressed his determination to follow in his mother’s footsteps, and so his first patronage was for Centrepoint, an organisation supporting homeless people.

As part of his supportive actions, and in a bid to deepen his understanding of the challenges homeless people face, the Prince spent a night sleeping out on the streets of London in December 2009, in temperatures as low as minus 4C.

He said afterwards: “I was very struck by the people I met and what they were struggling with – sleeping rough, sofa surfing, not having basic comforts a lot of us take for granted.

“That really struck me at a young age, bearing in mind the gulf for me, growing up in a palace, and seeing the other end of the spectrum where others were faced with huge personal challenges and were overcoming them. That was powerful to see at a young age.”

Earlier this year, the Prince joined local vendor, Dave Martin, in selling the street newspaper The Big Issue on the streets of London.

Then, in a letter to the newspaper, the Prince said he hoped to pass the same values to his children and that he intends to take them with him to see the work of such organisations.

He said: “I was 11 when I first visited a homeless shelter with my mother, who in her own inimitable style was determined to shine a light on an overlooked, misunderstood problem.

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“I wanted to experience the other side and see what it was like to be a Big Issue vendor. My time was truly eye-opening.

“I have always believed in using my platform to help tell those stories and to bring attention and action to those who are struggling.

“I plan to do that now I’m turning 40, even more than I have in the past. So, for my part, I commit to continue doing what I can to shine a spotlight on this solvable issue not just today, but in the months and years to come.

“And in the years ahead, I hope to bring George, Charlotte and Louis to see the fantastic organisations doing inspiring work to support those most in need – just as my mother did for me.”

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