Prince Harry wrote that the coronavirus is a "global pandemic that has shaken us to our core"

By Stephanie Petit
June 11, 2020 10:08 AM
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Fatherhood has changed how Prince Harry views the urgency of conservation.

As president of African Parks, the Duke of Sussex recently penned a forward to the organization's new annual report, in which he talks about his 1-year-old son Archie.

"Since becoming a father, I feel the pressure is even greater to ensure we can give our children the future they deserve, a future that hasn't been taken from them, and a future full of possibility and opportunity," Harry said. "I want us all to be able to tell our children that yes, we saw this coming, and with the determination and help from an extraordinary group of committed individuals, we did what was needed to restore these essential ecosystems."

Archie and Prince Harry
Sussex Royals
Prince Harry
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Prince Harry, 35, added that while already "living through an extinction crisis," the coronavirus is a "global pandemic that has shaken us to our core and brought the world to a standstill."

"There are solutions that are actionable and that work, and the African Parks model is one of them," he said, championing how the organization works to help the continent's most vulnerable people, animals and environments.

Africa is a place close to Prince Harry’s heart — he’s even called it his “second home” — and he has visited the continent on many occasions beginning as a young boy. In 1997, he joined his father in South Africa for a visit to a Zulu village — and memorably met the Spice Girls ahead of their concert in Johannesburg.

Throughout the years, Harry has made both public and private trips to the country. He’s helped with conservation work, especially with rhinos and elephants, in addition to getting to know its people and their struggles.

In addition to being president of African Parks and patron of the Rhino Conservation Botswana, Prince Harry also co-founded Sentebale in 2006 with Prince Seeiso of Lesotho, a charity to support young people affected by HIV and AIDS in Lesotho, Botswana and Malawi.

Archie, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry
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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were able to introduce son Archie to the continent they love so much — and where they had their third date camping in Botswana! — in the fall, when the baby joined them on a royal tour in Africa. Archie even had his first royal engagement, accompanying his parents to meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter, Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe.

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Archie celebrated his first birthday on May 6 in Los Angeles, where Meghan and Prince Harry moved after stepping down from their roles as senior members of the royal family earlier this year.

"Meghan made the cake — strawberries and cream," a source told PEOPLE of the quiet birthday festivities. "And Harry helped with decorations and blew up balloons."