By Phil Boucher / People.com
October 22, 2019
Pool/Samir Hussein/Getty Images

Kate Middleton and Prince William recently welcomed some truly inspirational teenagers into their Kensington Palace home.

Fresh from their successful tour of Pakistan — which saw the royal couple’s plane encounter a dangerous lightning storm over the capital of Islamabad — the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge revealed that they honored the 10 finalists in the BBC Radio 1 Teen Heroes Awards earlier this month.

Kate, who greeted the teens in a vintage silk, 1930s-style midi dress by L.K.Bennett, and William were also joined by singer Camila Cabello.

“I was so honored to be invited to Kensington Palace to meet and celebrate this year’s Teen Hero finalists with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge,” Cabello told the BBC. “Hearing the incredible things these Teen Heroes have done is so inspirational! Their passion and dedication to help others is amazing and they really blew me away!”

Now in its tenth year, Teen Heroes honors 12 to 17 year olds who inspire others, show courage and bravery or make a difference in their communities. Many have also overcome difficult times to become campaigners, fundraisers, ambassadors or volunteers.

Three winners will be crowned Teen Heroes of 2019 in front of an audience of 14 to 17 year olds at the Radio 1 Teen Awards on Sunday, Nov. 24.

This includes 12-year-old winner Hazel, who lives with a rare genetic disorder called xeroderma pigmentosum (XP) that limits the ability of her body to repair damage caused by UV light.

Despite being advised by doctors to remain indoors from the age of 3, Hazel has made a film and delivered a series of high school speeches to raise awareness of XP. Earlier this year, she also climbed the 3000-ft high Ben Lomond in Scotland, raising $2,500 for charity.

A second winner — 14-year-old Scarlett — has autism and an incurable nerve condition called HNPP, which makes everyday tasks like carrying shopping bags hugely painful. Despite this, she cares for her mother, older sister and grandmother, performing house chores, gardening and walking her grandmother to church on Sunday.

The third winner Rachel, 17, has a more political focus, leading campaigns for young Brits about difficult issues like knife crime and cyber-bullying, for which she’s won a Diana Award, named in honor of William’s late mother.

News of the Teen Heroes meeting comes after Prince Harry and Meghan Markle opened up about their struggles with the British tabloid press in the ITV documentary Harry & Meghan: An African Journey.

The BBC reported on Monday that William is “worried” about his brother. A palace source told the news outlet that Meghan and Harry are thought to be “in a fragile place.”

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