As they stepped off their flight from London to Victoria, British Columbia on Saturday, September 24, all eyes were on the royal family.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, along with Prince George, 3, and Princess Charlotte, 16 months, were all perfectly coordinated in matching blue ensembles and big smiles (despite the fact that it was midnight in London and they had just journeyed over 4,000 miles).
Yes, this weekend marked the start of the family’s much-hyped Royal Tour of Canada — and it’s safe to say, the world is excited. After all, this is only the fourth time Princess Charlotte has been seen in public. First was, of course, her birth on May, 2, 2015. Then, her christening on July 5, 2015. And then finally, her balcony debut at Buckingham Palace on June 11 of this year.
Clinging to her mom, Charlotte chewed on her fingers and smiled for the photographers and dignitaries — including Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie.
Prince George, however, was a bit more shy. Holding on tight to his parents’ hands, he at first refused to give PM Trudeau a high-five, shaking his head instead. Once he warmed up, though, he gave Trudeau an enthusiastic wave:
Later, the kids were dropped off at their home away from home for the week at Government House in Victoria, which has been decked out with toys and fully baby-proofed.
We likely won’t see the children again until they attend a children’s party in Victoria, British Columbia on Thursday, September 29. But in the meantime, their parents are keeping themselves very busy at events across the country.
On the second day of their tour, The Duke and Duchess visited Sheway, a community outreach program that, according to their website, “provides health and social service supports to pregnant women and women with infants under 18 months who are dealing with drug and alcohol issues.”
While there, William and Kate were given teddy bears for George and Charlotte and learned about the program’s amazing services for women and families. At one point, a mom walked in late and apologized saying, “Sorry, we just had a little accident to clear up before meeting you,” according to The Telegraph.
Prince William, who understands what that’s like as much as any parent, replied with, “No worries at all, we know all about that.”
At a round-table discussion that same day, the Duchess reportedly told the women:
“What you’re all carrying as mothers and what you’ve all been through, is a huge, huge burden and just being able to come here and share your stories with us and each other is amazing.
“You’re giving your children an amazing chance by coming here and being able to talk about your stories.”
Later, the couple headed to the Immigration Services Society of British Columbia, which provides services to the thousands of refugees who flee to Canada each year. There, they met with a young Syrian family — the Mahameeds — who came to Canada in August, along with their two daughters.
As their tour continues, it’s clear that while the media’s focus may be largely on how well-behaved the children are or how well dressed “Princess Kate” is — the Royal Family’s focus is on some of the most important issues of our time. At the heart of this tour is a true concern for the well-being of women and families and how their family can help support them.
And there’s nothing more regal than that.