Home Royal NewsPrince Charles and Camilla Prince of Wales & Duchess of Cornwall see Maori traditions, roundtable discussions, Sea Cleaners, & Governor’s reception

Prince of Wales & Duchess of Cornwall see Maori traditions, roundtable discussions, Sea Cleaners, & Governor’s reception

by Dianne Dunn

Day two of The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall’s New Zealand tour touched on a little bit of everything. The royal couple started their morning on the grounds of Government House, where they were met by members of the New Zealand Defence Force.

Two Maori elders, the Kaumatua and the Kuia performed the karanga (call of welcome), a traditional greeting with Charles and Camilla in which they touch foreheads and noses, called a hongi, meaning shared breath. Members of the Defence Force’s Maori cultural group performed a rousing haka, while the elders explained the meaning of each step to the couple.

During the performance, one warrior places a dart on the ground for The Prince of Wales to pick up. Charles taking the spear slowly, shows that he comes in peace.

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After the welcoming, the Prince and the Duchess were joined by the Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern and Chief of Defence Force Air Marshal Kevin Short. Prince Charles was quite jolly with Ms. Ardern as he thanked her for taking the time to meet with him, given that she had other duties to perform. He then joked with the reporters that he had hoped they would be offered a cup of tea.

Speaking of her conversation with The Prince of Wales, the Prime Minister expressed that he was very well informed about New Zealand’s current affairs. She additionally stated: “We had a fantastic exchange about issues particularly pertaining to the environment. He’s always been interested in those areas, he is well ahead of his time with his knowledge around climate change.”

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As a gift, Charles was given 10 native trees that are to be planted in his honour. Next, Prince Charles met with the National Party leader Simon Bridges, who gifted the heir to the throne with a pot of honey. The future King has his own hives at Clarence House.

While her husband met with Mr. Bridges, The Duchess of Cornwall took part in a roundtable on Domestic Violence with the Shine organisation. Shine (Safer Homes in New Zealand Everyday) is one of the largest organisations in New Zealand that helps to support victims of domestic violence. Shine’s mission is to stop domestic abuse once and for all by offering many different services for those in need of help, from a domestic abuse helpline, women’s refuge centres, to crisis advocacy. It is said that every four minutes, the local police respond to a domestic abuse incident, a statistic that needs to end.

Camilla shared: “It’s so important for voices to be heard. When I sat down and listened to some of these tales they were just shocking, shocking. Hopefully today we can up the ante.”

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In addition to meeting with survivors and representatives for Shine, the Duchess joined another series of discussions and roundtables at a Women Of The World Think-In, in her capacity as President of the Southbank Centre’s Women of the World Festival (WOW). The discussions centred on obstacles women and girls face globally, that prevent them from achieving their full potential. Camilla was received by the Governor-General of New Zealand Dame Patsy Reddy, who also spoke at the roundtable.

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Camilla also wore her WOW pin, for the event.

A bit of time at sea was next on The Prince of Wales’ agenda, as he made his way to Viaduct Harbour to visit the organisation Sea Cleaners. Made up entirely of volunteers, Sea Cleaners works to clean up and preserve the coastline of New Zealand by clearing up plastic from the ocean waters.

Prince Charles joined the volunteers for a trip around the Harbour, patrolling for plastic and learning about the organisation’s work. Having long been an advocate for sustainability and waste reduction, Charles first started speaking out on the problem of plastic pollution in 1970. The organisation teams up with the New Zealand Navy for their clean up effort.

The Prince of Wales meets the Sea Cleaners organisation at Viaduct Harbour. (Photo courtesy of Clarence House)

After his boat tour, The Prince of Wales attended a tea for The Prince’s Trust New Zealand, and then on to a meeting about Sustainable Urbanisation in Auckland with representatives from Kainga Ora- Homes and Communities.

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Once the teas were finished, Charles and Camilla met back up to visit the team headquarters of the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron. They joined Team Emirates – the current America’s Cup champions – for a photo with the America’s Cup, the oldest trophy in international sport. The team will compete to defend their title at the America’s Cup in 2021.

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The royal couple finished off their hectic day back at Government House for a reception hosted by the Governor-General Dame Patsy Reddy. On hand for the reception was acclaimed opera singer Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, who coincidentally performed at The Prince of Wales’ marriage to the late Diana, Princess of Wales.

On Wednesday, the royal couple will visit Northland, Kaikoura and Christchurch.

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1 comment

Yumiko Kokuryu Thu 21 November, 2019 - 2:36 am

Dear Prince Charles and Camilla, Please take a safe and pleasant trip in New Zealand.

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