Prince Harry made a surprise video appearance during the Diana Awards on Wednesday. The virtual ceremony, which was held on what would have been Princess Diana’s 59th birthday, honored young people who pushed for change in the same way Diana did. During his remarks, which were recorded from Los Angeles, Harry said he was happy that he could join.
“I am so incredibly proud to be part of these awards, as they honor the legacy of my mother and bring out the very best in people like you,” he said.
He continued by addressing the uncertainty of the world, adding that in spite of it, those being honored had found ways to make positive change. Harry said that he knew his mother was an inspiration to many of them and explained that she never took the easy or comfortable route.
“Right now, we’re seeing situations around the world where division, isolation, and anger are dominating as pain and trauma come to the surface,” Harry continued.
He added that he sees hope in people like the awards’ honorees, and said he was “confident about the world’s future” because it was in the hands of these young people. As he continued his remarks, he also addressed the Black Lives Matter movement. Harry said that his wife had recently suggested that prior generations hadn’t done enough to right the wrongs of the past. He apologized personally, saying he was sorry that the world was not the place that younger generations deserved.
“Institutional racism has no place in our societies, yet it is still endemic. Unconscious bias must be acknowledged without blame to create a better world for all of you,” the former royal said.
Harry also said that he was ready to be part of the solution alongside the honorees of the award and that the moment provided an opportunity to push for change.
The Diana Awards were established in Princess Diana’s memory and have the support of both Prince Harry and his brother Prince William. More than 180 people from 35 countries were honored during the ceremony, according to People. In addition to Prince Harry, the ceremony also featured appearances from Liam Payne, Emma Thompson, Will Poulter, and James McVey.
Throughout her time in the spotlight, Princess Diana was known for her charity work. She led a campaign to ban the use of landmines worldwide and helped to change the perception of those with AIDS during the early days of the epidemic, according to Harper’s Bazaar. The awards are meant to honor that legacy.