Monday, 3 May 2021

"When Any Suffer, We All Suffer": Prince Harry Joins a Host of Well-Known Faces for Fundraising Concert Vax Live

It's an incredibly exciting night as the much anticipated Vax Live: The Concert to Reunite the World is getting underway at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are chairs of the event which aims to raise funds for millions of frontline workers around the globe. Prince Harry was there in person tonight whilst Meghan, who is reportedly due their daughter next month, will appear virtually when the concert is broadcast next Saturday. There are many special elements to the event, not only in its mission which is critical, but in simply seeing a concert safely taking place. As the photos began to come in, I messaged a friend, "Who would have thought we would be here a year ago?"

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Harry and Meghan's roles as chairs have seen them "leading a coordinated drive across the private sector to raise critical funds for COVAX -- a vaccine-sharing program co-led by the World Health Organization (WHO)". In a statement, the Duke and Duchess said, "Over the past year, our world has experienced pain, loss, and struggle -- together. Now we need to recover and heal -- together. We can’t leave anybody behind. We will all benefit, we will all be safer, when everyone, everywhere has equal access to the vaccine. We must pursue equitable vaccine distribution, and in that, restore faith in our common humanity. This mission couldn’t be more critical or important."

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More from ABC 7:

'Attendance is being restricted to people who are "fully vaccinated,'' in other words, they must have received their final dose of COVID-19 vaccine no later than April 18. And mask-wearing will be required inside the stadium, with the exception of the performers while they're on stage."We're working closely with L.A. County and the state of California to ensure a safe and enjoyable event,'' a Global Citizen spokeswoman told City News Service. "We're following all of the latest guidelines with regards to capacity at the venue and testing protocols to ensure the entire crew and audience are safe.''

The broadcast will encourage donations, with the goal of ensuring vaccinations for 27 million health-care workers globally, including in the poorest countries of the world. Organizers will also advocate for "equitable distribution'' of vaccines.

On Tuesday, Global Citizen announced several major donations that have already come in. Cisco donated $5 million, an amount that is being matched by an unnamed Swiss foundation, while the Analog Devices Foundation donated $1 million, and the Coca-Cola Foundation donated $500,000. According to event organizers, the donations will fund the purchase of about 2.3 million vaccine doses.'

Prince Harry took to the stage first, receiving quite the ovation :)

In an impassioned speech, Harry praised the efforts of frontline workers: "We are at a defining moment in the global fight against COVID-19. Tonight is a celebration of each of you here, the vaccinated frontline workers in the audience and the millions of frontline heroes around the world. You spent the last year battling courageously and selflessly to protect us all. You served and sacrificed, put yourselves in harm's way and with bravery, knowing the costs. We owe you an incredible debt of gratitude. Thank you."

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People reports the Prince continued: "But we're also coming together because this pandemic cannot end unless we act collectively with an unprecedented commitment to our shared humanity. The vaccine must be distributed to everyone everywhere. We cannot rest or truly recover until there is fair distribution to every corner of the world. The mission in front of us is one we cannot afford to fail and that's what tonight is about. The virus does not respect borders and access to the vaccine cannot be determined by geography. It must be accepted as a basic right for all and that is our starting point."

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Touching on the importance of solidarity and the heartbreaking situation in India: "In reality, and especially with this pandemic, when any suffer, we all suffer. We must look beyond ourselves with empathy and compassion for those we know, and those we don't. We need to lift up all of humanity and make sure that no person or community is left behind. What we do in this moment will stand in history, and tonight, we stand in solidarity with the millions of families across India who are battling a devastating second wave."

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A video portion of Harry's speech.

Harry returned to the stage a bit later to discuss misinformation. "If vaccine distribution moved as quickly as misinformation, just imagine how many lives could be saved."

Harry welcomed South African activist and actress Nomzamo Mbatha to the stage with a fist pump.

Of course, we owe a debt of gratitude, more significant than we ever could have imagined, to those on the front lines of the pandemic. We need only watch the devastating scenes in India if ever a reminder of the self-sacrifice and courage healthcare and essential workers demonstrated, and continue to demonstrate, day after day, was needed.

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This is why it is so enormously fitting that one of the first concerts since the pandemic features a 27,000-strong audience filled with fully vaccinated healthcare workers.

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President Biden and First Lady Jill Biden made a virtual appearance at the event. The President said "We’re working with leaders around the world to share more vaccines and boost production to make sure every country has the vaccines they need. If we get this done, we won’t have to miss another moment". The Hill reports the Commander-in-Chief made the "special appearance" as part of the White House's We Can Do This initiative to increase public confidence in vaccines and reinforce the importance of measures such as mask wearing and hand washing. Jill is wearing an Oscar de la Renta lemon dress which is very similar to the piece worn by Meghan during a recent Spotify virtual appearance.

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The 'purple carpet' was filled with stars and well-known faces. There was also a feast of fashion with the one and only Jennifer Lopez looking fabulous.

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Host Selena Gomez in red. Selena has been actively sharing news, updates and a call to arms on her social media channels ahead of the event.

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Chrissy Teigen arrived in a glamorous dress with a little helper -- her daughter Luna.

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Chrissy recently revealed she and Meghan are in touch. "She's been so kind to me ever since we connected. She had written me about baby Jack and loss. She is really wonderful, and so kind—just as kind as everyone says she is. That's why you look at everything and you're like, 'My god, what is absolutely wrong with people that they have to make this person out to be so malicious or so crazy?' when it's just as simple as them being as kind as everyone says they are." Meghan and Chrissy reportedly bonded over loss. They both very sadly suffered miscarriages.

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A striking look for Nomzamo Mbatha.

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Jennifer Lopez performing 'Sweet Caroline'.

J. Lo was joined on stage by her mother Guadalupe Rodríguez.

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Ben Affleck takes to the stage with Jimmy Kimmel dressed as Robin.

Eddie Vedder got the crowd onto their feet.

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J Balvin performing.

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The Pope recorded a virtual message of support.

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Other leaders participating include Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, French President Emmanuel Macron, and Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenković.

The concert will be available to view across a number of platforms on Saturday, 8 May, 8 pm ET, including Global Citizen's YouTube channel. In addition to Meghan's appearance, we'll see footage from a host of guests and, most importantly, updates on the funds raised for vaccines. A very exciting night and a treat to see Harry in his element.

UPDATE: Harper's Bazaar reports "Vax Live has already raised more than $53.8 million in philanthropic and corporate commitments to vaccine procurement, medical tools, and supplies, which has far exceeded Global Citizen’s goal."

21 comments:

  1. Thank you, Charlotte, for this exciting preview of what looks to be a great concert. Harry looks and sounds great. I hope this concert will raise many millions to help vaccinate health care workers around the world.

    R

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    1. It's been a terrific success. I'll have much more information on Saturday. I did see this update earlier:

      Harper's Bazaar reports "Vax Live has already raised more than $53.8 million in philanthropic and corporate commitments to vaccine procurement, medical tools, and supplies, which has far exceeded Global Citizen’s goal."

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    2. That's great news. Hopefully that will be multiplied many times over when the concert airs.

      R

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  2. Allison in US3 May 2021 at 16:36

    This was amazing and a huge success already! I'm glad Harry was able to carry it without Meghan -- good for his self-esteem. I suspect Meghan needs to stay home right now.

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    1. I agree Allison, nice to see Harry taking center front these days.

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  3. Great article. Worth noting, Chrissy Teigen's daughter is named Luna, not Simone.

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    1. Yes it is Luna, thanks to those who pointed it out.

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  4. Becca in Colorado3 May 2021 at 18:21

    To finally see a stadium full of people! It's kind of overwhelming, in a good way.

    Harry looks so happy and relaxed, more so than I can remember seeing him in a long time. His speech was inspiring, as always. Can't wait to see Meghan's bit!

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  5. Isn't Chrissy Teigen's daughter's name Luna?

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  6. Theresa - Austin, TX3 May 2021 at 21:36

    This is just amazing!! Harry is so eloquent.

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  7. Cant wait to see the full concert this weekend. Harry as usual, pure joy to watch and listen to. Thrilled for the success of this venture. Wonderful of all the great people to participate.

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  8. How could a father not feel anything but pride in a son like Harry? It's his intelligence and self-confidence that shines through. He gives 100%+ to all his endeavors.

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    1. I agree ������

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  9. Well done Harry, here is a boy whose strengths we have not finished discovering; it's wonderful to see him blossom and develop his skills. With the passage of time, he gains a lot of self-confidence and that's good.
    Thank you Charlotte for these reports that I went through, they are so uplifting and moving.
    If their goals are already achieved then we can only wish them more "Sussex" LOL! Even more "Succes" for the continuation of other projects and that this money is used wisely. well done

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  10. If the covid19 vacine patent owners would offer to make cheaper vacines available to the poorer countries it would be a really generous gesture. Otherwise we are just lining their coffers!

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    1. I hope that there will be an international concerted action that the vaccine industry gives up on the patents, at least for a while. Especially under the aspect that they received lots of state fundings for the development of the vaccines and didn't have so much costs on their own as usual.

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  11. Just seeing the words Global Citizen behind Harry says it all for me. He loves his homeland and will a!ways be a proud Brit, but he was born for more...shine on,Harry! He and Meghan knew that as a team, their synergy could do amazing things for by the world.

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  12. Hello Charlotte, have you heard of the children's book written by the Duchess of Sussex?
    Please, as soon as you can, can you get us some information about this book? Sounds super interesting.
    Thank you in advance Charlotte and have a good day to you.

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  13. Thank you charlotte for having Updates for prince harry really come out to comfort zones I really love him now meghan and harry are really I great team now helping around the world

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  14. Thanks for this, Charlotte! Very excited about this, Harry looks well:) -op

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