The Duke of Sussex spoke candidly today of feeling so ‘overwhelmed’ by the world’s problems that he sometimes struggles to get out of bed in the mornings.
It came as Meghan wore a headscarf in public for the first time as she and her husband visited South Africa’s oldest mosque.
The Duchess followed in the footsteps of several royal women before her, including Prince Harry’s late mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, as she sported the long, cream-coloured head covering to the Auwal Mosque in the Bo-Kaap area of Cape Town at the event, designed to highlight religious tolerance.
Harry, 35, who has previously spoken of his own mental health struggles, made his comments to Peter Oki, 18, an Anglican Christian, originally from Lagos, Nigeria, who moved to Cape Town five years ago and attends a Jewish school.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are pictured on Day Two of their African tour at the British High Commissioner’s residence in Cape Town yesterday
The couple are pictured sharing a candid moment at the evening youth reception
Prince Harry (pictured with Meghan at Auwal Mosque in Cape Town today) spoke candidly today of feeling so ‘overwhelmed’ by the world’s problems that he sometimes struggles to get out of bed in the mornings
The Duke of Sussex is pictured at a youth reception at the British High Commissioner’s residence in Cape Town this evening
Mr Oki, who now studies politics and sociology at the University of Cape Town, said he asked Harry and Meghan what they wanted their ‘legacy’ to be.
He said: ‘Harry said that he often woke up and felt overwhelmed by too many problems in the world.
‘That sometimes it’s hard to get out of bed in the mornings because of all the issues. But he wanted to use their platform to enable grass-roots change and to try and create a better society.’
During their visit, which aimed to highlight interfaith dialogue Harry and Meghan met with representatives of the Church of England and Rabbis together with Christian, Jewish and Muslim youth leaders, including students who are participating in the Cape Town Interfaith Initiative.
Meghan (left) mirrored Harry’s mother Diana, who wore a veil during a visit to the Badshahi Mosque in Lahore on a royal tour of Pakistan in 1991 (right)
The programme works with 15 to 18-year olds to help develop respect for people from different religions, faiths cultures and backgrounds and an appreciation of the value of diversity.
Sitting cross-legged on the floor of the mosque with a group of students, having removed their shoes, Meghan spoke to Banzi Bottoman, 17, a Christian who attends Gardens Commercial High School.
He told them: ‘Just because someone looks different to how I do, that doesn’t make me inferior to anyone else. We need to build bridges between people of different heritages.’
Meghan, 38, who wore a floor-length olive dress and cream headscarf, told him: ‘That was just so meaningful, it gave me chills.’
Harry, thumping his chest, said: ‘You can feel that you’re speaking from here.’
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex sit with local residents in the Bo Kaap area of Cape Town to mark Heritage Day
Earlier the couple met Father Michael Lapsley, an Anglican who moved to South Africa to campaign against segregation during the apartheid era whose hands were blown off in 1990 by a letter bomb sent by the Civil Cooperation Bureau, a covert outfit of the apartheid security forces. He now has two metal hooks on his arms.
He said: ‘Shaking hands is obviously not natural for me so I went to hug the Duchess and her response was ‘thank you’.
‘I received a warm hug from both Harry and Meghan, I could tell immediately they are warm people who mean well. I was only invited the day before the event so I was very honoured to meet them.
‘Harry immediately motioned to my hands and said ‘letter bomb?’ It was instinctive on his part and it was a good conversation starter.
‘In terms of Harry and Meghan’s visit, I believe their tone, the way they are speaking has been quite beautiful.
‘There’s a naturalness, a warmth, a genuineness that is communicating from them and they have been very well received.’
Prince Harry also stopped to take his shoes off before heading inside the oldest mosque in South Africa
Earlier in the day the couple hit the beach yesterday for a lively bonding ceremony with a group of surfers at Monwabisi Beach, on the outskirts of Cape Town.
The couple, who had left baby Archie back at their base, were learning more about Waves for Change, a charity which helps vulnerable children from impoverished communities through the power of surfing.
Although fierce winds meant they couldn’t actually set foot in the sand, Harry and Meghan entered into the activities outside on the grass, overlooking the ocean, laughing and giggling.
During a ‘power hand’ bonding exercise, where the couple were asked to declare their personal strengths, Harry cheekily ducked the task and invited his wife to share instead.
Meghan looked bashful as she tried to think of something and was told she might consider dancing her strong point, but she laughed and said no.
But she did think of something she was good at – ‘parenting’, she said, was a new strength that she and Harry were ‘learning and developing’.
Turning to her husband, she declared him ‘the best dad’, while Harry – who smiled and looked his wife in the eye with a loving ‘ahhh’ – called her ‘the best mum’.
There was even time for a little meditation, which Meghan – who has long been a proponent of daily mindfulness – took part in particularly enthusiastically closing her eyes and clasping her fingers.
Waves For Change was founded after a group of surfing enthusiasts discovered how beneficial the sport was in engaging young people and helping their mental health.
Harry, 35, (pictured with Meghan and a mosque leader) who has previously spoken of his own mental health struggles, made his comments to Peter Oki, 18
During a lively ‘kilo’, a welcoming chant, call and response game, Harry and Meghan enthusiastically sang, clapped and slapped their thighs.
Speaking to the media, Harry said that it was ‘fantastic’ being back in South Africa.
‘This Africa tour was always going to be fantastic, been looking forward to Cape Town – her [Meghan ) first visit, I love this place,’ he said.
‘And again meeting the people, the energy, the fun, again the positivity, the optimism and the hope in the face of such incredible adversity.
‘There are young people and older people, men and women trying to change what effectively has become the norm.’
Asked what was the most pressing global issue when it came to dealing with the stigma around mental health, Meghan replied: ‘It’s just getting people to talk about it and talk to each other, right?
‘And you see that no matter where you are in the world, if you’re a small community or a Township, if you’re in a big city – it’s that everyone is dealing with a different version of the same thing.’