Cape Town – Prince Harry attended the OnSide Awards on Sunday – an event to celebrate young people making a difference in their communities.
"With 13 Youth Zones around the UK and over 50 000 members, OnSide is making an incredible impact in some of the most deprived communities," the Sussex Royal Instagram account shared.
"During visits to OnSide Youth Zones earlier this year, The Duke and Duchess had the chance to witness the impact these facilities are having – providing local youth with a safe space where they can learn new skills, develop lasting friendships and be part of a shared and supportive community."
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The Duke of Sussex attended the inaugural OnSide Awards at the @RoyalAlbertHall this evening, joining over 2,500 youth, volunteers and staff of @OnSideYZ. These awards celebrate the young people who have gone above and beyond for their communities, many of whom have overcome the most challenging of circumstances. With 13 Youth Zones around the UK and over 50,000 members, OnSide is making an incredible impact in some of the most deprived communities. During visits to OnSide Youth Zones earlier this year, The Duke and Duchess had the chance to witness the impact these facilities are having – providing local youth with a safe space where they can learn new skills, develop lasting friendships and be part of a shared and supportive community. #OnSideAwards Photo © PA / OnSide
The event was held at the Royal Albert Hall with over 2500 guests, where Prince Harry gave climate change activist, Greta Thunberg a royal shoutout, reports E! News.
"It feels so good to be here and to be part of the first-ever OnSide Awards," Prince Harry said. "I've been to lots of events in this evening, but the energy here tonight is truly something special, and of course, I feel privileged to be part of this community."
Prince Harry went on to talk about the work young people are doing and said, "When Greta started her climate change protest she was just 15 years old – one voice, with just one placard, sitting on her own outside the Swedish parliament," Prince Harry said.
"Many people, actually, I should say, many adults, dismissed her. Yet today, millions upon millions of young people have joined her fight.
"She may have been just one person at the beginning, but she had a belief, a mission, and a desire to do something not just for herself but for everyone, and now – the whole world is paying attention," he continued.
According to The Telegraph, 16-year-old Thunberg started a school protest and went on a strike outside the Swedish Parliament in 2018. Her campaign gained international recognition and since over 100 000 school children has joined her fight.
Prince Harry added, "Whatever your dream – every country, every community, every school, every friendship group, every family needs their own Greta – someone who can lead the way, someone who is prepared to stand up for what they believe in, and show how much they care for the people in their lives and the community around them."
This isn't the first time Prince Harry's advocated for the youth. His Royal Highness focused specifically on the youth on his trip to Africa with Meghan and Archie. Visiting Waves For Change based in Muizenberg he was driven by the work being done in South Africa and was inspired by young entrepreneurs when he visited the British High Commissioner's residence in Bishopscourt.
In his speech that evening he said, "Thank you for introducing us to Cape Town. Especially to my wife, who hasn't been to this part of Africa before.
"It's certainly a privilege and a pleasure to be able to bring my family here and make it the first official visit," he said. "Yesterday was quite remarkable in Nyanga. One of the things that stood out the most as it does in a lot of the visits we do around the world, especially in the Commonwealth, is the power of the youth and what the young people are able to do.
"Cape Town has so much to celebrate, but I think what the two of us have been really, really impressed by, are those young people, and the young people that are here this evening."
The OnSide Awards on Sunday was Prince Harry's last royal engagement. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are reportedly taking a six-week break from their duties to spend the festive season with Archie and Meghan's mom, Doria Ragland.