How Prince Harry's charity is marking World AIDS Day in a new and unique way

By Meaghan Wray

Prince Harry has young people at the heart of so many initiatives, and Sentebale’s upcoming campaign puts them front and centre once again for a very important cause. On World AIDS Day (Dec. 1), the charity’s Let Youth Lead advocates are taking over radio stations in Botswana to speak openly about the epidemic.

The initiative hopes to inspire this generation to fight against the virus, and they’ll be doing so through a campaign called “Radio Positive” – five hours of young people speaking out about Africa’s epidemic and calling for fellow youth to join the movement. With the help of Sentebale and Harry’s passion for advocating on behalf of young voices, participants will have the opportunity to speak openly about HIV/AIDS and help end stigma and discrimination in the country.

But this is definitely not the first time the prince, 34, has worked to mobilize efforts to reframe conversations around the continent’s health epidemic. Back in 2016, the dad-to-be was the face of Sentebale’s campaign #FeelNoShame, where he encouraged people to be open about their struggles. In the video, he said: “To show our support for the children of Lesotho [where Sentebale works] and help reduce the stigma for all those affected by HIV, we are turning this World AIDS Day into a day in which no one should feel any shame about their secrets. Together, we can tackle the stigma surrounding HIV and give the young people carrying it the childhood they deserve. The childhood so many of us take for granted.”

Prince Harry and Prince Seeiso of Lesotho co-founded the organization in 2006 to help ensure that the most vulnerable children in the country were supported to go on and lead healthy lives. For over a decade, Princess Diana’s son has dedicated much of his life to drawing attention to the urgent issue of extreme poverty and to sufferers of HIV/AIDS – a cause that was also close to his mother’s heart. He was first inspired to put his energies into the cause after his gap year in Lesotho in 2004, and has since gotten a public HIV test with Rihanna in Barbados on World AIDS Day in 2016 and again to mark national HIV testing week in 2018.

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