'We're shining our shoes and dusting off our hats for Prince Harry and Meghan'
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Cape Town - Excitement is in the air for the Cape Town organisations that The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will visit during their trip to South Africa.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will embark on a ten-day tour to Southern Africa between Monday 23rd September and Wednesday 2nd October, which will also serve as their first official tour as a family.
The first day of the tour will begin in a township in Cape Town where Their Royal Highnesses will view a workshop that teaches children about their rights, self-awareness and safety and which provides self-defence classes and female empowerment training to young girls in the community.
The royals will later tour the District Six Museum to learn about their work to reunite members of the community forcibly relocated during the apartheid era. The Duke and Duchess will also join a community cooking activity with former residents of District Six at the nearby Homecoming Centre.
Director of the District Six Museum, Bonita Bennett didn't reveal much but said: "We are just shining our shoes and dusting off our hats for the royals. We have a program that we busy finalising, and then we will share more information soon."
A look inside the District Six Museum. Picture: Tracey Adams/African News Agency
On Tuesday, Their Royal Highnesses will travel to Monwabisi Beach to learn about the work of ‘Waves for Change’, an NGO which trains and supports local surf mentors to provide mental health services to young people. The Duke and Duchess will also see the work of The Lunchbox Fund, one of four charities to benefit from the generous donations made by the public on the occasion of the birth of their son Archie Mountbatten Windsor.
The Fund, not only provides to the ‘Waves for Change’ programmes, but also provides over 1500 meals a week to their 3 sites in South Africa, and 30 000 meals each school day - nationally around the country to over 850 schools.
"We're really excited to host The Duke and Duchess of Sussex and we're preparing to share some of our mental health activities and get them involved. We'll also be doing a demonstration of our mental health activities and we will be on the beach with them - teaching them breathing activities and the anchoring of positive thoughts using your breath," said ‘Waves for Change’ CEO, Tim Conibear.
Pictured is Aiden Markram watching the kids surf. Waves for Change uses its surf therapy methodology to alleviate psychological challenges in the townships of South Africa where 33% of children suffer from psychological challenges. Picture: David Ritchie/African News Agency(ANA)
Waves for Change combines the thrill of surfing with evidence-based therapy to help vulnerable and differently-abled children from under-resourced communities learn and practice behaviours which improve their resilience to stress. Picture: Ayanda Ndamane/African News Agency (ANA)
In the afternoon, the royals will visit the Bo-Kaap area to mark Heritage Day. Their Royal Highnesses will visit Auwal mosque, the oldest mosque in the country, where they will meet representatives from different faith groups to hear about the strength of interfaith dialogue in Cape Town.
Afterwards, The Duke and Duchess will visit local residents who will host them for a cup of tea in their home.
Secretary of the Bo-Kaap Civic and Ratepayers association Jackie Poking: "We are expecting them on Heritage Day and we are very excited to welcome them to our Bo-Kaap. We have a full day of activities planned for the community to celebrate the 19 heritage sites and our Heritage Protection Overlay Zone (HPOZ). It's the first heritage day that we have these two important declarations in place."
Tourist walking the colourful streets of Bo-Kaap. The Bo-Kaap is an area of Cape Town, South Africa formerly known as the Malay Quarter. Picture: Henk Kruger/African News Agency
* Additional reporting by Marvin Charles and Sukaina Ismail.