September 24, 2019 / 5:54 AM / a month ago

Harry and Meghan dance with youth mentors, visit Cape Town mosque

CAPE TOWN (Reuters) - Britain’s Prince Harry and his wife Meghan danced with a group of mentors who teach vulnerable youngsters from townships to swim and surf, then visited South Africa’s oldest mosque in Cape Town on Tuesday, the second day of their Africa tour.

The royal couple visited the Waves for Change project, which grew from a small surfing club started in Masiphumelele township in 2009, and which helps young people from poor and violent communities develop trust and confidence through surfing at Monwabisi beach .

The couple danced and chanted with surf mentors in wetsuits, who demonstrated the therapeutic activities they use to support young people who had survived traumatising experiences.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are on their first overseas tour since the birth of their first child Archie, who has accompanied them on their visit.

The compound at Monwabisi beach also houses the Lunchbox Fund charity, which benefited from public donations made to celebrate the birth of their baby Archie.

Harry praised the fund, which provides around 27,000 hot meals each day to vulnerable children.

“It’s amazing to think that just on the other side of here you’ve got tin huts with all of these kids with nothing. And they’re bringing them together. Nice hot meal provided by Lunchbox Fund,” said Harry.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and his wife Meghan, visit Auwal Mosque, the first and oldest mosque in South Africa, in the Bo Kaap district of Cape Town, South Africa, September 24, 2019. Tim Rooke/Pool via REUTERS

Many of the young people had been terrified of the sea before they joined the youth group, he said.

“Now they can swim, they can surf... it’s incredible,” he added.

MOSQUE VISIT

Later in the day, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex visited South Africa’s oldest mosque, Auwul Mosque, in Bo-Kaap, one of Cape Town’s oldest residential quarters and a former slave enclave with brightly-painted houses.

Harry and Meghan, who wore a cream head scarf and long dress, met Muslim and Christian religious leaders, including anti-apartheid cleric Michael Lapsley who lost both his hands and the sight in one eye from a parcel bomb sent by apartheid security forces.

They later took part in the area’s colourful heritage day activities and greeted a resident in her home.

Harry, Queen Elizabeth’s grandson and sixth in line to the throne, has been visiting southern Africa for two decades for holidays and conservation work.

Slideshow (35 Images)

He will travel alone on Thursday to Botswana, where he and Meghan holidayed shortly after they began dating in July 2016 and returned to in 2017 for a romantic getaway.

Harry then heads to Angola, visiting the landmine clearance project that featured in iconic photographs of his late mother, Princess Diana, during her campaign to ban landmines.

He ends the solo section of his tour in Malawi, where he will meet President Peter Mutharika.

Editing by Katharine Houreld and Alexandra Hudson

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