Cape Town – The Duke and Duchess of Sussex made their first official appearance in South Africa on Monday when they visited Nyanga, a township in Cape Town, South Africa.
After sitting down with girls from the Mbokodo Girls’ Empowerment programme and talking to children on the street, their royal highnesses shared a few words with the community.
"Molweni," Prince Harry said, "This is definitely the first time I’m talking on top of a stump," he said, referring to his makeshift podium.
"Thank you very much for the warm welcome today."
"It was incredibly important for my wife and I to begin our trip to South Africa here in Nyanga. Thank you for having us," he said, as the crowd ululated.
"As someone who has visited this amazing country many times and as someone who regards Cape Town as a uniquely special place in Africa, I wanted to ensure that our first visit as a family with my wife and my son, focused on the significant challenges facing millions of South Africans, while acknowledging the hope we feel so strongly here.
"We are so incredibly grateful to be able to listen and learn from you about the issues that define your daily lives in these communities. And that’s what this is – a community. A community where men and women have a vital role to play. Touching on what your president said last week, no man is born to cause harm to women. This is learned behaviour, and a cycle that needs to be broken."
Prince Harry spoke about redefining masculinity and creating your own footprints, while finding strength in your heart to carry on. "Your strength is in your spirit, which for me means honouring and protecting my wife and being a positive role model for my son."
"Meghan and I are truly inspired by your resilience, your spirit, your sense of community and your belief in a better future for everyone here."
Prince Harry introduced Meghan and helped her up before the Duchess spoke about the "incredible" and "powerful" work being done in the community.
Meghan spoke of the great change that the community not only need, but deserves. "You welcomed us into this community, you were open and honest with us, about the dangers women and children face, and about how you are addressing them."
Duchess Meghan, who’s been advocating for women’s rights, explained, "When women are empowered the entire community flourishes."
The Duchess addressed the ongoing gender based violence in the country and said she came across a quote by Maya Angelou not too long ago she wanted to share: "Each time a woman stands up for herself, without knowing it, possibly without planning it, she stands up for all women."
"Your commitment, to what is right, gives all of us hope," Meghan said before adding, "You must keep going."
"And just on one personal note," she concluded, "May I just say that while I am here with my husband as a member of the royal family, I want you to know that for me, I am here as a mother, as a wife, as a woman of colour, and as your sister. I am here with you and I am here for you and I thank you so much for showing my husband and I the spirit of ubuntu."
(Photos: Courtney Africa/African News Agency)