19/03/2012 07:43 GMT | Updated 19/03/2012 08:47 GMT

Duchess Kate Delivers First Public Speech At East Anglia Hospice (PICTURES)

Kate Middleton has given her first public speech during a visit to East Anglia's Children's Hospices.

The Duchess of Cambridge told the organisation's staff, supporters and the families of children with life-threatening conditions, that her husband Prince William would have loved the visit.

"A view of his that I share is that through team work so much can be achieved," Kate told the hospice on Monday morning.

"I feel enormously proud to be part of East Anglia's Children's hospices and be part of the life-changing work that you do," Kate said.

The duchess is royal patron of the charity and visited it privately last autumn when researching which good causes she wanted to support.

During the visit Kate also heard a performance by a 10-year-old singer, Bethany Woods, who gave a spell-binding rendition of a song made famous by The Muppet Movie, Rainbow Connection.

In a hushed music therapy room, which moments earlier had been filled with a cacophony produced by percussion instruments played by children receiving treatment at the hospice, the wheelchair-bound youngster began to sing.

Bethany was diagnosed at the age of 22 months with merosin negative congenital muscular dystrophy, which causes poor muscle tone, tightness in the joints and respiratory problems.

She receives a wide range of care from the hospice to alleviate her condition but especially loves taking part in music and recorded a song for the hospice's recent fundraising appeal DVD.

When the Duchess first entered the music therapy room, she greeted each of the four young musicians and their parents in turn.

On greeting Bethany, Kate said she had seen her video and asked her "Did that take a long time?", adding that she liked her performance.

Before leaving, Kate will plant a commemorative tree in the Treehouse grounds.