The royal, 33, kicked off a two-day visit to Amsterdam on Monday to attend the International AIDS Conference. Harry sat down with young advocates to discuss issues faced by teenagers who have the disease, where he spoke about the benefits of getting young people involved in policy changes and spreading information.
“We have to put the power into the hands of the younger generation, because that’s where the solutions are going to come from. That’s where the passion and engagement is coming from as well,” he explained in a Facebook Live video. “There is a generational gap — there’s a generational gap in pretty much every problem we have at the moment — but the younger generation not only have the solutions but have the capability to be able to solve these problems in a much shorter period.”
Harry also noted the importance of normalizing the conversation surrounding HIV, just like mental health, another important platform to members of the royal family.
Harry attended the conference on behalf of Sentebale, a charity he co-founded with his friend Prince Seeiso of Lesotho, which has been working for children with HIV in Africa for more than 10 years. Just last month, he traveled to Pitseng, Lesotho, on a private trip to open a school and a house. Kensington Palace also shared previously unreleased photos from the event on Monday, in which he adorably interacted with the young children.
Princess Diana led pioneering efforts to break the false stigma that casual contact, such as shaking hands or hugging, can spread the disease. Prince Harry accepted a posthumous award acknowledging her groundbreaking contributions made to challenging the fear that surrounded HIV and AIDS from the LGBT magazine Attitude last year.
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Harry said, “So when that April, she shook the hand of a 32-year-old man with HIV, in front of the cameras, she knew exactly what she was doing. She was using her position as Princess of Wales — the most famous woman in the world — to challenge everyone to educate themselves, to find their compassion and to reach out to those who need help instead of pushing them away.”
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Harry’s trip to the Netherlands was made without his new bride, Meghan Markle. After returning from their two-day visit to Dublin, Ireland, the couple last stepped out together at a London exhibit to mark the 100th anniversary of iconic Nobel Peace Prize winner Nelson Mandela’s birth.