The Princess of Wales visits Sebby’s Corner to kickstart initiative to support families

Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales with representatives from Baby Banks across the UK.
Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales with representatives from Baby Banks across the UK.

The Princess of Wales visited Sebby’s Corner in Barnet on Friday 24th November to kickstart an initiative from The Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood to provide support to families with young children in the run up to Christmas.

The visit comes as The Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood published an “Issues Index”, which found that a third of the general public cite financial pressures as the biggest issue facing parents and carers in 2023. During her visit, The Princess heard about the crucial work baby banks do across the UK to get essential items to families, including clothing, nappies, toiletries and baby equipment. Powered by local communities, baby banks provide a vital lifeline for families in all sorts of challenging circumstances.

Whilst at Sebby’s Corner, The Princess met a mother who has been supported by the charity as well as the referral partner who made the referral. Families are referred by a large network of referral partners which includes professionals such as midwives, health visitors and teachers.

Her Royal Highness joined volunteers and Shaping Us champion, Giovanna Fletcher, in putting the final touches to Sebby’s annual Christmas Grotto, which provides a space where families who are struggling the chance to choose gifts for their children. Finally, The Princess joined a conversation with representatives from Baby Banks from across the UK to discuss the increasing demand on their services. There are more than 200 baby banks around the country, all of which are currently seeing rising demand for their services.

The Centre for Early Childhood is encouraging members of the public to donate funds, products and pre-loved items, or to volunteer their time, to support their local baby banks throughout December. Find out more here.

As highlighted in the Shaping Us campaign which The Princess launched in January, our relationships, experiences, and surroundings in our earliest years lay the foundations that shape the rest of our lives. Organisations like Baby Banks can help relieve some of the stresses and strains they face and in turn give parents and carers the capacity to provide the nurturing care which is so important to babies and very young children. Supporting parents and carers, who are doing their best to provide for their families in incredibly challenging circumstances, is essential and can have a life-changing impact.

IPSOS technical note 

Ipsos interviewed 4,680 UK adults aged 16+ though their online i-Say panel. This included interviewing 1,011 parents of children aged 0-5, Fieldwork ran from 19th April to 2nd May 2023. To create the Issues Index, participants were asked open-ended questions which have then been themed and coded. Data are weighted to match the profile of the population. All polls are subject to a wide range of potential sources of error.