Wednesday, 22 January 2020

Meghan's Visit To See Mayhew's "Incredible Progress"

During Meghan's return to the UK earlier this month, we know she and Harry spent time at the Hubb Community Kitchen before travelling to Canada House. The Duchess also paid a visit to her patronage the National Theatre and this morning via Sussex Royal, two photos were shared of a visit to Mayhew, another of her patronages.

Sussex Royal shared: "Earlier this month, The Duchess of Sussex popped in to see the amazing people at Mayhew to hear about the incredible progress made throughout the festive period. The Duchess of Sussex, having been proud patron of Mayhew since January 2019 and long understanding the connection between animal and community welfare, applauds the people at Mayhew for the vital work that they do every day."

Mayhew is a grassroots charity working tirelessly to improve the lives of animals both in London and internationally. Mayhew looks for innovative ways to reduce the number of animals in need through pro-active community and educational initiatives and preventative veterinary care. This includes working with homeless charities across London to ensure people and their dogs can be kept together; running a pet refuge programme to provide shelter and care for the pets of people in crisis for short periods of time; and educating young people about animal welfare and the importance of responsible pet ownership. Internationally, Mayhew works with governments, local communities and charitable groups in Afghanistan, Georgia, Russia and India to help improve animal welfare.

Sadly, we all know the festive period can be a particularly difficult one for charities like Mayhew. They are dedicated to finding the best home for each animal in their care such as Shadow, an energetic and intelligent five-month-old boy.

I've been thinking for some time we could see the Duchess pen a children's book about adopting a pet with proceeds going to the Mayhew. I also wouldn't be surprised to see a visit to their Afghanistan arm at some point this year. Although she's now working in a different capacity, she remains patron and will continue to support them through visits and larger projects. 

You can support Mayhew's amazing work by donating or purchasing items from their online shop. Their 2020 calendars are just £3 at the moment. 

Meghan wore a navy wool coat by Massimo Dutti for the visit (with many thanks to Meghan's Fashion). The A-line piece features a lapel collar and two side pockets. It retails for $399.

Meghan blue stripe shirt is the very famous Misha Nonoo Husband Shirt (another stellar ID by Meghan's Fashion). The $185 piece is described as: "The Husband Shirt is an oversized blue and white striped cotton button-up shirt with silver tuxedo-style studs. It features elongated cuffs, a classic stitched tuxedo pleat, and the signature MN logo embroidered on the back of the neck." It's available in an array of colours on Misha Nonoo's website.

And accessorised with her $145 Dean Davidson Rainbow Moonstuds earrings. They are available at Nordstrom.

I'll update with additional fashion details once they become available. 

Monday, 20 January 2020

"It Has Been Our Privilege To Serve You And We Will Continue To Lead A Life Of Service"

During Harry's gap year in Lesotho he forged a strong friendship with Prince Seesio. Both young princes had lost their mothers and wanted to create a charity to help the children in the country living with HIV and to support them in a better future. From there Sentebale - meaning Forget Me Not - was born. Almost fourteen years later the success and expansion of the effort is a testament to the commitment and dedication we've seen year in, year out since. During an event in London tonight with staff, supporters and friends including his longtime mentor Mark Dyer, Harry pledged his continued dedication to Sentebale. It seemed only fitting for him to choose the setting to speak about recent events, the path that led to the decision and his hopes for the future.

In a passionate and moving speech, Harry said: "Good evening everyone and thank you very much for being here for Sentebale charity, that myself and Prince Seeiso created all the way back in 2006 to honour our mothers' legacy in supporting those affected by HIV and AIDS. Before I begin I must say that I can only imagine what you may have heard, or perhaps read, over the past few weeks. So I want you to hear the truth, from me, as much as I can share. Not as a prince or a duke, but as Harry. The same person that many of you have heard grow up for the last 35 years, but now with a clearer perspective. The UK is my home and a place that I love. That will never change".

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"I've grown up feeling supported from so many of you and I watched as you welcomed Meghan with open arms as you saw me find the love and happiness that I'd hoped for all my life. Finally, the second son of Diana got hitched… hurray!"

"I also know that you've come to know me well enough over these past years to trust that the woman I chose as my wife upholds the same values as I do - and she does. And she is the same woman I fell in love with."

"We both do everything we can to fly the flag and carry out our roles for this country with pride. Once Meghan and I were married, we were excited. We were hopeful and we were here to serve. For those reasons it brings me great sadness that it has come to this."

"The decision that I have made for my wife and I to step back is not one I made lightly. It was so many months of talks, after so many years of challenges, and I know I haven't always gotten it right but as far as this goes there really was no other option."

"What I want to make clear is we're not walking away, and we certainly aren't walking away from you."

"Our hope was to continue serving the Queen, the commonwealth and my military associations but without public funding. Unfortunately, that wasn't possible. I've accepted this, knowing that it doesn't change who I am or how committed I am, but I hope that helps you understand what it had come to - that I would step my family back from all I have ever known, to take a step forward into what I hope can be a peaceful life."

"I was born into this life and it is a great honour to serve my country and the Queen. When I lost my mum 23 years ago you took me under your wing. You looked out for me for so long, but the media is a powerful force and my hope is one day our collective support for each other can be more powerful, because this is so much bigger than just us."

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"It has been our privilege to serve you, and we will continue to lead a life of service. So in that respect, nothing changes."

"It has also been a privilege to meet so many of you and to feel your excitement for our son Archie - who saw snow for the first time the other day and thought it was bloody brilliant!"

"I will always have the utmost respect for my grandmother, my commander-in-chief, and I am incredibly grateful to her and the rest of my family for the support they have shown Meghan and I over the last few months."

"I will continue to be the same man who holds his country dear and dedicates his life to supporting the causes, charities and military communities that are so important to me. Together, you have given me an education about living, and this role has taught me more about what is right and just than I could ever have imagined."

"We are taking a leap of faith - so thank you for giving me the courage to take this next step."

It was important to hear from Harry directly before he rejoins Meghan and Archie back in Canada in the coming days. It's very clear he felt there was no other option for him and his family, though a painful one. Harry also spoke of his desire to continue to serve the Queen, the Commonwealth and his military appointments. Unfortunately a compromise couldn't be worked out in that regard. After serving in the army for a decade, giving up those positions is very difficult for him. In the end, Harry and Meghan chose the best course for their family, as they hope for a more peaceful life whilst continuing to support a range of causes close to their hearts. It was a deeply moving speech and very much highlights how dreadfully sad this entire situation is. What a terrible shame it came to this - it's a profound loss for the monarchy, the UK and the Commonwealth. I couldn't close without mentioning Harry's love for his wife, it shone through in his words. "I also know that you've come to know me well enough over these past years to trust that the woman I chose as my wife upholds the same values as I do - and she does. And she is the same woman I fell in love with." As he pondered the future in recent months, I imagine a very well-known quote from Diana was never far from his mind "If you find someone you love in your life, then hang on to that love." They have each other and their beautiful son. And nothing matters more.