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Prince William resumes public duties after Kate’s cancer announcement

The Prince of Wales was back in action on Thursday, carrying out his first public engagements during which he promised to “take care” of his wife, Catherine, who revealed her cancer diagnosis last month.

William, 41, visited a surplus food charity in Surrey before he headed to a youth center in west London.

The Princess of Wales, who has not carried out any official duties since Christmas Day, announced in a powerful video on March 22 that her diagnosis had been a “huge shock” and she had already started preventative chemotherapy. Kate’s cancer was found in tests following an abdominal surgery in January.

The revelation followed weeks of speculation over her whereabouts and bizarre conspiracy theories circulating online.

William started his engagements on Thursday by visiting Surplus to Supper, a food redistribution organization where he met with volunteers and helped load vans with food to dispense to local groups.

He also chatted with chefs on how they are bridging the gap between food waste and food poverty while donning an apron and pitching in with the preparation of meals.

While in the kitchen, one volunteer gave the prince several get well cards for his wife and father, King Charles III, who also revealed in February that he was getting treatment for an unspecified form of cancer.

William then jumped into one of the vans and joined volunteers as they drove to Hanworth Centre Hub, a youth center that benefits from the Surplus to Supper’s work.

The prince appeared touched by the gesture from volunteer Rachel Candappa. According to Britain’s PA Media news agency, she told the future king to “take care of” Kate, to which William replied: “I will.”

Kensington Palace said his visits aimed “to spotlight the community and environmental impact organisations in the area are having through their work.”

The palace added: “Reducing food waste has a considerable number of environmental benefits, including reducing emissions from landfill that contribute to climate change.”

The prince’s last official engagement was on March 19 when he visited the English city of Sheffield for his Homewards homelessness project. However, he and his eldest son delighted soccer fans when they were spotted at an Aston Villa game in Birmingham last week.

William’s presence will be a welcome signal to royal-watchers that his wife is feeling well enough for him to resume public-facing duties. However, it also had been expected that the heir to the British throne would be out and about once more after his children were back at school following the Easter break, which restarted on Wednesday.

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The Waleses have been out of the public eye over the past few weeks during the school holidays.

In Kate’s video message, she explained that it had “taken us time to explain everything to George, Charlotte and Louis in a way that is appropriate for them, and to reassure them that I am going to be ok.”

She added that she hoped “that you will understand that, as a family, we now need some time, space and privacy while I complete my treatment.

King Charles has also taken a step back from public-facing duties while undergoing treatment. He made his most significant public appearance on Easter Sunday following the tradition family church outing.

This post appeared first on cnn.com

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