Prince Harry salutes young people living with illness


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Getty Images
Prince Harry, patron of WellChild, recognises the bravery and courage of sick children and the people who care for them.

Prince Harry and a host of celebrities recognised the courage of children and young people with exceptional health needs at the annual WellChild Awards this week.

Also honoured at the star-studded ceremony run by the UK’s national charity for seriously ill children – were professionals, volunteers, brothers and sisters, who have gone the extra mile to make a difference to the lives of seriously ill children, young people and their families.

Patron Prince Harry met all the winners and their families at a reception before the ceremony. Speaking at the ceremony, he said: “Wow, wow, wow – another incredible year of awards, and barely a dry eye in the house amongst the adults. Upstaged once again by the younger generation!

“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.”

The WellChild Awards were established in 2005 to celebrate the courage shown by children throughout the UK who live with serious and complex illnesses every day. They are honoured next to their friends and siblings who care for them and the health professionals who ensure the patients receive the level of care that supports and enhances their quality of life.

Hundreds of nominations are received each year from across the UK, and winners selected by a panel of leading health professionals and others with an interest in children’s health, as well as children and young people who face serious illness themselves.

“We have heard tonight how important ‘home’ and ‘family’ are in giving many of our young winners the foundation and inspiration to defy the odds,” said Prince Harry. “With your support we can give many more children and young people the best chance to thrive – at home, together with their families. As you have seen this evening, WellChild’s work really does change lives.

“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. I am so fortunate to have had the chance of meeting you all and so proud to be associated with this fantastic charity.”

Over the years the charity has given out over 130 awards, to people from across the UK; the Isle of Arran to Southampton, Swansea to Essex and all in between.

WellChild’s Director of Programmes, Linda Partridge, a member of the judging panel,  said: “All the panel members are moved by the bravery of the children, the stories of selfless care and support and the dedication of the doctors, nurses, teachers, brothers and sisters who make a great difference to the lives of seriously ill children and young people.”

“The Awards are a perfect demonstration of WellChild’s commitment to helping as many seriously ill children and their families as we can and embody our aim of raising awareness of their needs.”




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