KATE’S NEW CHAL­LENGE

The ex­pec­tant royal is fill­ing her di­ary sup­port­ing causes close to her heart

WHO - - News - By Ka­rina Machado

The preg­nant royal is throw­ing her­self into good works.

With her bump all but con­cealed in a black zip-up track jacket, the Duchess of Cam­bridge showed off her ten­nis skills on Oct. 31, in her first solo ap­pear­ance since an­nounc­ing her preg­nancy in Septem­ber. Ac­ces­soris­ing her ath­letic gear—in­clud­ing new Nike sneak­ers—with a beam­ing smile, the avid ten­nis fan brushed up on her skills, do­ing drills with young play­ers at the Na­tional Ten­nis Cen­tre in Roe­hamp­ton. Says ten­nis pro Jo­hanna Konta, who met the duchess, “Ev­ery lit­tle girl and al­most ev­ery lit­tle boy wants to meet a princess, and it got them very ex­cited.”

It’s also an ex­cit­ing—and pos­si­bly de­mand­ing—time for the duchess, 35, who’s back in the thick of royal du­ties ahead of the ar­rival of her third child with Prince Wil­liam (due in April, as Kens­ing­ton Palace con­firmed). After ly­ing low with hy­per­eme­sis gravi­darum she re­turned to work last month, host­ing a func­tion on World Men­tal Health Day on Oct. 10.

On Nov. 1 she hosted a pri­vate dis­cus­sion fo­cus­ing on ma­ter­nal men­tal health at Kens­ing­ton Palace. “The Duchess is keen to de­velop an un­der­stand­ing of the is­sues sur­round­ing ma­ter­nal men­tal health, and to learn what sup­port is avail­able,” said Kens­ing­ton Palace of the meet­ing. Kate, who re­vealed in March that she suf­fered a “lack of con­fi­dence and feel­ings of ig­no­rance” as a new mum, spoke with aca­demics and ob­ste­tri­cians at the brain-storm.

Her cru­sade to draw aware­ness to child-and­ma­ter­nal men­tal-health is­sues con­tin­ues on Nov. 7, when she’s sched­uled to at­tend a gala din­ner for the Anna Freud Na­tional Cen­tre for Chil­dren and Fam­i­lies (AFNCCF) at Kens­ing­ton Palace. The char­ity—the duchess is a pa­tron—pro­vides early in­ter­ven­tion to vul­ner­a­ble fam­i­lies. A week later, she is ex­pected to visit the Hornsey Road Chil­dren’s Cen­tre in Lon­don to learn more about peri­na­tal men­tal health.

Th­ese en­gage­ments are a sign that the moth­erto-be’s re­cov­ery is well on track and, in­deed, the duchess looked in high spir­its at the Ten­nis for Kids ses­sion on Oct. 31. “It was great to see her pas­sion for ten­nis,” Konta tells WHO. “She’s lovely.”

The Duchess of Cam­bridge, a pa­tron of the Lawn Ten­nis As­so­ci­a­tion, had a ball at the Na­tional Ten­nis Cen­tre in Lon­don on Oct. 31. TIPS FOR GE­ORGE Kate hinted on Oct. 31 that Ge­orge might have in­her­ited her love of ten­nis. “[Kate] says with Ge­orge, just be

Be­ing a mum is “re­ward­ing” but also a “chal­lenge,” Kate (at the Troop­ing of the Colour with her fam­ily on June 17) has said.

The duchess hosted a dis­cus­sion with ex­perts about ma­ter­nal men­tal health on Nov. 1. As­ton Villa fan Wil­liam was not amused by gifts of West Ham jer­seys for Ge­orge and Char­lotte at the Lon­don Sta­dium on Oct. 18. A glow­ing Duchess of Cam­bridge ar­rived at t

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