Kate’s First Public Speech
Catherine Middleton made her first public speech on Monday 19 March 2012, when she formally opened a children’s hospice, The Treehouse in Ipswich.
The Duchess of Cambridge, who is the Royal Patron of East Anglia’s Chidren’s Hospices (EACH), a charity that works across Suffolk, Essex, Cambridgeshire and Norfolk, was invited to launch their latest new facility.
The Treehouse provides hospice care to young people with life-threatening conditions. The new hospice has extra bedrooms, a hydrotherapy pool and a suite of music and sensory rooms. It allows EACH to provide end-of-life care as well as short-break care to families of terminally ill children.
Dressed in a bright blue Reiss dress and black stilettos, The Duchess appeared slightly apprehensive as she delivered her speech to The Treehouse staff, supporters and the families of children.
Catherine described The Treehouse as being “a lifeline, enabling families to live as normally as possible, during a very precious period of time.” She praised The Treehouse team, commenting that “the feelings you inspire – feelings of love and hope – offer a chance to families to live a life they never thought could be possible.”
The Duchess made a tour of the hospice and spoke with the children, some of whom are terminally ill, and their families.
To commemorate her visit, Catherine planted an oak sapling in the grounds of The Treehouse.
Image: The Duchess of Cambridge leaves after her visit to The Treehouse, part of the East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices, in Ipswich. Photo credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire