With easing of the coronavirus lockdown in the UK, Kate Middleton stepped out for an in-person solo engagement on Thursday. She paid a visit to the East Anglia's Children's Hospices (EACH) to help plant a garden at The Nook. The 38-year-old royal undertook the engagement to mark the end of Children's Hospice Week.
The Duchess of Cambridge travelled from her country home in Norfolk to Norwich for her royal duty. She met the staff from EACH's care and facilities team, and thanked them "for the incredible work that they do," according to a statement by Kensington Palace.
Kate got her own plants, flowers and seeds to help the EACH charity build the garden at The Nook. These included lavender, bay leaf, and rosemary. The "sensory" plants are in keeping with EACH's theme of Sensory Rooms. These rooms have a variety of technology and products that stimulate or relax the senses and help children who are unable to talk or communicate, develop their communications skills.
With social-distancing guidelines, Kate worked alongside an EACH volunteer gardener, members of staff, and two families. The garden would be a space that would provide enjoyment for children and families. It also includes strawberry plants, geraniums, and hydrangeas to create a "calming" colour scheme.
The duchess known for her passion of gardening got her hands dirty, and planted a sunflower in memory of nine-year-old Fraser Delf, who was cared for by the hospice.
Kate's visit marked the end of Children's Hospice Week 2020. It is organised by Together For Short Lives and aims to raise funds for the 54 children's hospices in the UK. The duchess has been the patron of EACH since 2012.
"The care and the nurture that you provide children and families in the most unimaginable circumstances is just awe inspiring. I'd also like to pay tribute to all those families out there who are caring for and looking after a child with a life limiting illness. You do the most extraordinary job and I know it's particularly hard at the moment so my thoughts go out to you all," Kate wrote in a letter.