Princess Beatrice heartbreak: Royal breaks silence on ‘hugely challenging year’

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The royal made her comments while backing a project for the Northwood African Education Foundation, or NAEF. It recently launched a fundraising drive in the form of an art auction to be held online.

The auction, which has so far raised £11,622 at the time of writing, is due to close at midday on December 3.

The charity has said all funds raised through the auction effort will go directly to St George’s School in Ethiopia.

Princess Beatrice said she is “proud” to be a patron of the charity which she said provides “the precious gift of education to hundreds of children”.

She added: “This has been a hugely challenging year for NAEF and all charities and I would like to thank all those artists who have generously donated their work.”

The NAEF was launched in London by a coalition of parents, children, and staff at Northwood Schools, and independent school.

It is not the first time Beatrice has spoken out about challenging times this year.

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In a video message to another organisation of which she is a patron, the princess in April spoke of “an incredibly challenging time for the world and the United Kingdom”.

The message was directed to the Helen Arkell Dyslexia Charity. The royal added: “Yes, they are doing things online at the moment rather than face to face, but their incredible team of specialists is here to help whenever you need them.

“As patron of the Helen Arkell Dyslexia Charity, I just wanted to send this message to say the Helen Arkell charity is open for business.

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“I would encourage you to look at their website and see what’s available to you.”

Earlier this year, it was reported one in 10 UK charities could go bankrupt by the end of this year amid the coronavirus pandemic.

This is due to charities having to cope with a surge in demand for the services they provide while also suffering a loss of income, according to analysis by Pro Bono Economics.

The independent charity said smaller charities would be particularly badly hit, with almost two thirds claiming “significant” impacts to their services.

Matt Whittaker, head of Pro Bono Economics, said in June: “If we don’t funnel more resource to charities in the coming weeks, it’s clear that many will struggle to survive.”

Regarding Princess Beatrice’s help backing the NAEF’s fundraising auction, analysts have said she may have approached her sister Eugenie for assistance.

Princess Eugenie has herself previously worked for an online auctioneering company and is also director of Hauser & Wirth, a London art gallery, Australia’s Nine news reports.

Beatrice, meanwhile, is currently Vice President of Partnerships and Strategy at software firm Afiniti.

She married her husband Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, a property tycoon, in July this year.

The couple’s wedding was originally planned to take place in May, but it had to be delayed amid the coronavirus pandemic.

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