Just because Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis are royal doesn’t mean they live in an ivory tower. The three have seen homelessness on the streets of London, and, per The Mirror, their father, Prince William, is keen on educating them about the issue. He is also waiting for the right time to bring them to a homeless organization and teach them about helping others—something his mother, Princess Diana, once did with him.
“On the school run, we talk about what we see,” William told The Sunday Times. “When we were in London, driving backwards and forwards, we regularly used to see people sitting outside supermarkets, and we’d talk about it. I’d say to the children, ‘Why are they there? What’s going on?’ I think it’s in all our interests, it’s the right thing to do, to expose the children, at the right stage, in the right dialogue, so they have an understanding. They [will] grow up knowing that actually, do you know what, some of us are very fortunate, some of us need a little bit of a helping hand, some of us need to do a bit more where we can to help others improve their lives.”
Homelessness was an issue important to Diana, which has now been passed on to William. He hopes to end homelessness in the U.K. and, inspired by Diana’s compassion, is preparing to launch a “really big project” to tackle the cause—which remains a closely guarded secret, The Mirror reports.
William “does an awful lot where there aren’t cameras,” Mick Clarke, chief executive of homeless charity The Passage, told The Sunday Times. “That’s what he enjoys the most, because he’s meeting real people, hearing real stories. It’s what has formulated his plans. When he comes here, nothing’s sugarcoated, nothing is sanitized. People on the streets are very good about knowing whether someone is authentic or not within a second. He is very authentic.”
Of the cause close to his heart, William said “I don’t tend to give money. I tend to buy them a drink, food, something like that. I find that when I’m walking around or driving past and see other people do it [give money], people don’t even look at them. How many people stop and talk to somebody who is homeless? Very few of us. In my job, I get to meet these people, I get to hear the stories, I get to feel it, I get to see it. That for me—and I’ve heard from them themselves—matters an awful lot.”
He continued “They’ve become invisible. It’s really important that society acknowledges that there is somebody there and they’re having a tough time. It shouldn’t happen, but it’s right there. You can’t ignore it.”
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Rachel Burchfield is a writer, editor, and podcaster whose primary interests are fashion and beauty, society and culture, and, most especially, the British Royal Family and other royal families around the world. She serves as Marie Claire’s Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor and has also contributed to publications like Allure, Cosmopolitan, Elle, Glamour, Harper’s Bazaar, InStyle, People, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and W, among others. Before taking on her current role with Marie Claire, Rachel served as its Weekend Editor and later Royals Editor. She is the cohost of Podcast Royal, a show that was named a top five royal podcast by The New York Times. A voracious reader and lover of books, Rachel also hosts I’d Rather Be Reading, which spotlights the best current nonfiction books hitting the market and interviews the authors of them. Rachel frequently appears as a media commentator, and she or her work has appeared on outlets like NBC’s Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN, and more.
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