The Duke of Sussex told nurses and physicians that the United Kingdom needs more individuals like them to ‘to step up and help out’ since the country is “going through a lot right now.”
From the luxury of his $14 million Montecito property, where he lives with his wife Meghan and their two children Archie and Lilibet, Harry talked to the winners of the 2022 WellChild Awards about how struggling Britons want to muck in and help each other.
‘The United Kingdom is going through a lot right now. And it needs individuals like you to keep doing what you’re doing and to urge others to stand up and contribute where they can,’ he said the four professional winners of this year’s WellChild Awards.
‘The feeling that I’ve always had, certainly in the UK, is that the general population, everyone gets it, everyone wants to muck in and help each other no matter what.
‘There are certain other fractions that make that tricky for people, but the way that I’m constantly inspired every single day is by you guys.
‘You don’t have to do what you do, you choose to so… I’m going to say thank you.’
The call seemed to be received by Prince Harry from his and Meghan’s joint office at their Southern California residence, which has ‘two luxurious club chairs set side by side behind a single desk, facing into the room like thrones.’
During his video conversation with the winners of the 2022 WellChild Awards, which he lamented not being able to meet in person, the Duke also provided insights into his family life, including how his family has ‘three emotional support dogs.’
The Sussexes have three dogs: Pula, a black Labrador, and Guy and Mia, two rescue beagles. ‘Between the three of them they charge around chasing squirrels and causing all sorts of problems for us every day. But they’re also emotional support dogs – 100%! When they’re behaving.’
When told that his late mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, would be so proud of him, Harry was obviously affected.
During the video call, Harry spoke to each of the winners in turn, including Tony Hudgell, who donated £1.7 million for the hospital that treated the injuries he incurred after being abused by his biological parents.
‘How are Archie and Lilibet doing?’ said four-year-old Henry Waines of Bridlington, East Riding, who won the inspiring youngster aged four to seven category.
‘They’re doing fine,’ Harry responded, ‘Archie is very, very busy, and Lili is starting to utilize her voice, which is fantastic.’
Harry replied: ‘They’re doing great – Archie is very, very busy and Lili is learning to use her voice, which is great.’
As the duke chatted to a confident Henry, he told him: ‘You sound just like my son Archie. The same little squeaky voice. I love it.’
The duke told the youngster: ‘My name’s Henry as well. But everyone calls me Harry. I have no idea why.’
His father, now King Charles, once stated that this was always the case unless Harry had been “very, very naughty.”
Henry’s mother, Shevonne, revealed to the Duke that he was the reason for naming their son Henry.
The duke covered his face with his hands in embarrassment and said: ‘Oh no, don’t say that, and how did that happen?’
Henry was born with severe health issues that impede his capacity to breathe, eat, and communicate, and he is hooked up to a ventilator 24 hours a day.
He has been lauded for his resolve to demonstrate how successfully a tracheostomy can be lived with, and he climbs trees, plays football, and rides a bike without stabilisers while towing a 12kg trailer housing his ventilator behind him.
Harry also spoke with Isabelle Delaney, 13, who won the inspiring young person aged 12 to 14, and her family, who reside in Solihull, West Midlands.
Isabelle, who has autism, ADHD, hypermobility, and Irlen syndrome, was joined on air by her labradoodle Hope, who is being trained to be the teenager’s service dog.
Harry compared his three dogs – a black labrador named Pula and two rescue beagles named Guy and Mia – to having five children since they were always up to mischief.
He called them “emotional support dogs, 100% of the time – when they’re behaving.”
‘We all need a dog that keeps us calm. I’ve got three in this house now. We basically have five children,’ the duke said.
‘I’ve got a black labrador called Pula, a rescue beagle called Guy and we got another rescue beagle called Mia and, between the three of them, they charge around chasing the squirrels and causing all sorts of problems to us every single day.
‘But they are also emotional support dogs, 100% – when they’re behaving.’
The Duke also spoke with Tony Hudgell, who received the special honor four to eleven years award.
Tony, who was beaten so cruelly by his biological parents that he had to have his legs amputated, earned more than £1.7 million for Evelina Children’s Hospital with his challenge to walk every day in June in 2020 on his new prosthetic legs.