Last night Prince Harry attended the annual WellChild Awards at the Dorchester Hotel, where he made friends with inspirational young people, doling out hugs and handshakes that brought smiles to their faces.
Seriously ill children, young people and their families were at the event, which celebrates their inspirational qualities and the health professionals who go that extra mile to make a difference.
Five-year-old Ollie Carroll suffers from the rare Batten disease; he can hardly walk but managed to muster his strength to stand up and hug Harry in a touching moment that was captured on video, which you may view below.
Hosts for the awards were Dick and Dom and Gaby Roslin. Presenters of the awards included Ashley Banjo and Perri Kiely from Diversity, former Olympic swimmer Mark Foster, Ollie Locke and Spencer Matthews from Made in Chelsea, and Penny Lancaster Stewart.
Prince Harry spent most of his night kneeling down interacting with the children and their families.
He made an inspirational and motivational speech at the WellChild Awards 2016 saying: “I would like to congratulate all of tonight’s winners again, well done and thank you for inspiring all of us with your strength, positivity and selflessness.”
“This is now my ninth WellChild awards and each year at this remarkable event, I am profoundly moved by the people I have met and the stories they have shared with me.
“It is one of those moments in life when you are left in awe at the strength of human character, particularly amongst those so young. Watching these children and young people face challenges with such determination, positivity and good humour, never fails to take my breath away.”
Watch the heartwarming moment a 5-year-old boy with Batten disease uses all his strength to hug Prince Harry at the WellChild Awards pic.twitter.com/Y72cgAPCZ0
— PA Media (@PA) October 4, 2016
Uncle to Prince George, 2, and Princess Charlotte, 16 months, the evening no doubt strikes a chord with the Prince who has been involved with the organisation and awards for nine years.
The Royal is Patron for this national charity. WellChild’s mission is to:
- Provide practical and emotional support to seriously ill children, young people and their families, enabling them to leave hospital and live life in their own homes
- Fund projects and research to ensure parents, carers and those who work in the children’s healthcare sector are better equipped to provide support to children and young people with long term, complex healthcare needs
- Influence the future of health, education and social care policy to ensure it meets the needs of families of seriously ill children and young people.
Prince Harry’s invaluable support, as WellChild’s site calls it, helps greatly to raise awareness of the charity’s work in improving the future opportunities for seriously ill children and their families.