Prince Harry at Mind Awards: ‘we are shattering the silence that was a barrier to progress’

Prince Harry at Mind Awards: ‘we are shattering the silence that was a barrier to progress’

Prince Harry attended the Virgin Money Giving Mind Media Awards 2017 yesterday, November 13, where he gave a speech praising this year’s conversation surrounding mental health.

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Harry presented the Speaking Out Award to the 10 runners who participated in the BBC documentary ‘Mind Over Marathon’. Before handing out the medals, Harry gave a speech:

    “I wanted to come here tonight to say thank you. At the beginning of the year, William, Catherine, and I believed that the country was on the cusp of something special. We noticed that after decades of hard work from dedicated campaigners, people seemed ready for a different kind of conversation on mental health. Everyone was tired of stigma and scare stories around mental illness. And they were frustrated that it was always being written up in a negative way. They saw that their children were emotionally open in new ways that seemed positive and empowering. Finally, we were all beginning to grasp that mental fitness was an issue worth talking about for every one of us. They were ready for a truly national conversation on mental health. And with the help of people in this room, that is exactly what we have had.
    “In classrooms, in workplaces, around the dinner table, between friends, and even between strangers, people are now really talking about their own wellbeing and how to help those around them. And while just talking doesn’t cure all ills, we are now shattering the silence that was a real barrier to progress. We are grateful that so many in the media got behind the Heads Together campaign – you helped make it the success that it has been. But the biggest thanks has to go to the British public. You embraced it, you engaged with it, and you normalized it. I’m sure millions of you were surprised by how many people around you had suffered without you knowing, and at the same time what a relief it was that you were now able to share your own hardships and experiences. Whether you were the talker or the listener, we have all learned a great deal about ourselves, and become better people for it.
    “The nominees here tonight have told incredible stories of courage, challenge, and triumph throughout an extraordinary year of mental health journalism. Thank you so much for your work and dedication. But I would especially like to thank the people who were brave enough to share their personal stories with the public. There are so many people who have talked openly this year that Mind couldn’t select one to receive the Speaking Out award, so instead they have taken the exceptional decision to award it to ten. The runners who took part in the BBC’s documentary ‘Mind Over Marathon’ did not just open up about their experiences, they trained to take part in the greatest marathon in the world. They overcame their own fears and challenges, and in the process, inspired every single one of us.”

[Transcript of the video below – Harry’s speech begins at 53:30]

When the winners walked onto the stage, Harry gave each one a hug before helping to hand out the medals.

I quite appreciate that Harry acknowledges that people have been working for years to create the right national, and international, headspace to accept a campaign like Heads Together, and how, for the most part, the success of Heads Together is because the campaign came at the right time in a social climate that was already ready to have the mental health conversation.

I also appreciate that Harry acknowledges that just talking doesn’t cure all ills, because this is something we’ve been discussing for a year. Thanking the media for getting behind the Heads Together campaign was a good thing, too. Overall, this was a great awards speech.

In terms of presentation and delivery of the speech: I harp on Kate all the time for looking at her notes too much when giving a speech, but Harry needs to stop reading off his paper, too. He doesn’t bob his head as much as Kate does, but he reads straight from the paper and clearly hasn’t memorized the speech.

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For fashion: Harry wore a navy suit with a light blue tie and a white shirt. He accessorized with some bracelets on his right wrist.

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39 thoughts on “Prince Harry at Mind Awards: ‘we are shattering the silence that was a barrier to progress’

  1. I think there is much room for improvement with Harry, but a recent poll shows that he is the most popular member of the BRF. I wish he would get his own office separate from that of William and Kate, though. i also applaud him and William (and it is hard for me to praise Willy) for stepping up with their engagements.

    1. I agree with Harry that people are talking more about mental health issues. Unfortunately in many countries, including Canada, the process and wait times for treatment are too long.

  2. Harry is so charming, you have to smile back even to the picture of his smiling face.
    I like it when he is dedicated to.a cause, he has so much of his mother in him in such moments.They both sparkle/d at such events and let people feel appreciated when they meet them.
    This warmth is something the monarchy urgently needs and has always needed.

  3. I do have to say that I feel very uneasy the more we do not see him and Meghan together. Does anyone know if he flew straight back to Britain from Chicago after his appearance there? I was hoping he and Meghan could have spent time together.

    1. Surely it is a deliberate decision of theirs not to get photographed? I am sure they are still together, but just trying to stay under the radar for as long as they can. The fact that he continues to look so happy suggests to me that the relationship is still very much on.

      Love KMR’s extensive fashion notes 🙂

    2. Yes he flew back immediately as was announced by KP beforehand. Meghan has been busy filming the last few scenes for Suits (it ends this week). Hopefully we will see them together soon, but it really isn’t out of the ordinary. She was pretty much MIA between Pippa’s wedding and when they were snapped arriving in Botswana for their holiday. Plus Emily Andrews yesterday tweeted they’ve been away recently, so I wouldn’t worry.

      Meghan is great at coming to the UK without anyway knowing.

    3. A story just came out yesterday saying that she isn’t returning to Suits after this season along with the actor who plays Mike, her fiance, on the show. He just recently got married and his wife is an actress as well so speculation is that he wants to move back to LA.

      So Meghan has been finishing up filming here the last few weeks. I believe someone mentioned that filming ends on November 15th.

      Anyway I know we aren’t used to a woman involved with a Royal having a job and being independent from them, but I doubt there is anything to worry about.

    4. There is an official agreement NOT to publish pictures of MM in the papers. That’s why they are able to come and go in the UK seemingly under the radar.

      The IPSO agreed to uphold the agreement because parliament was threatening to impose press regulations, and Harry was threatening to use the royal privilege to support parliament. This was during the weeks surrounding Harry’s ‘stop trolling my girlfriend’ letter to the media / public.

      According to the letter arguing for thid agreement, MM and Harry recognise that the UK creates the tabloid market around the world and if something isn’t published in the UK or there is no market for it in the UK, them other countries are less inclined to pursue it.

      So if the UK can’t or won’t publish pictures of MM in London or elsewhere, then no tabloid pictures of her in other countries.

      And that agreement is evidence that any pictures you do see of them have been sanctioned.

        1. Any pictures that appear in the UK media are approved. They are not random, and they serve a purpose. And every time Harry or MM violate their own agreement, it causes major grumblings amongst the reporters because they aren’t allowed to go about their business without threat of press curbs.

    5. Look Meghan knows that she won’t get a better deal than this, it’s not as if her acting career is red hot- she isn’t letting him go anytime soon. And Harry the moocher knows that it looks good for his public image if he actually has a woman who has had a career and beauty to be beside him. It’ll make him look less lazy and then he’s free to jaunt off to his untold number of vacations per year. While it’s admirable that the three royal stooges are on the mental health bandwagon, they can stop taking credit for breaking down barriers. The people who pour their sweat and blood in this field everyday, have done their job for them; their praises should be sung here.

  4. Loved the speech. It touched on quite a few things that have been criticised before.
    His hugs are the best. Such a warm and lovely person.

  5. All the trio read from notes, I believe. Harry has said he has had anxiety in the past around big crowds so I suppose it is his coping mechanism. But, despite being well written, his speeches look less professional than his father’s because of the delivery.
    I don’t believe any other royal family reads entire speeches directly from notes? I appreciate Harry’s speeches though since they tend to praise many people who work tirelessly behind the scenes, give credit to the participants, and broaden the conversation (such as him admitting talking isn’t a cure).

      1. Expectation of being prepare and knowing what you are saying and doing. Kate clearly never reads anything before she gives the speech; at least Harry does. Harry’s gotten a lot better but he’s not as good as Charles who is natural.

        HM is an old lady. I don’t expect much out of her at this point. She wasn’t trained for a modern world and what we expect in speech giving.

  6. How self-congratulatory.

    “… people are now really talking about their own wellbeing and how to help those around them.”

    “I’m sure millions of you were surprised by how many people around you had suffered without you knowing”.

    I want to see the stats. His hyperbole certainly fits the trios PR model- repetitive positive self-spin, little substance, no transparency.

    It would have been a good speech without the first paragraph. I keep hoping he’ll remove himself from the Willy-Kate symbiosis. Now I’m beginning to suspect he is all in on it and the trend towards letting the PR team shape the philanthropic narrative while they sit on a beach somewhere applauding themselves on their achievements.

    1. Yes, this “William,Catherine and I” is annoying.It’s like a kindergarten-trio. The PR behind this concept is totally obvious:They shall secure the continuity of the british monarchy together.

    2. I cringed at the “William, Catherine and I…” self-congratulatory tone too, inferring that their collective insights pulled professionals together. In what universe??? Whatever would you plebs do without us royals! Self-spin sums it up. So tiresome. Given their collective histories of some (H) to no achievement (WK), they need to employ bucket loads of humility and focus praise on those actually doing the damn work.

      Maven, Harry is on board with this PR narrative, I have no doubt. It means they can put in the odd appearance, spout the same empty mantra and keep living large on the backs of others.

    3. Hahahahaha exactly MaventheFirst. I’m sick of them acting as if no one talked of mental health before they deigned to do it. And never mind that the millions that could be saved by cutting these greedy lot off of the public teat, could go towards increasing mental health facilities for those that cannot afford expensive private treatment.

  7. Wow, Harry was really “on” last night. He seemed to be completely engaged and thoroughly enjoying the event. He seemed to connect with each of the award winners–it truly seemed heartfelt and genuine.

    I don’t mind so much that he read his speech because he did it so well, with seemingly sincere thanks for work done beforehand and respect for the award winners. Even if Harry didn’t write it himself, he read every single sentence as though it came from his own heart. It would have carried even more weight, however, if he didn’t depend upon his notes.

    And to Harry or to whomever wrote this speech, thank you for acknowledging that the success of Heads Together is dependent upon the work of others, although I think the royals still need to give more recognition to others and less praise to themselves. Much less about the royal foundation and more about the charities and people who actually do the work. And like others have said above, enough with the “William, Catherine and I.” Time for Harry to be his own person. And I don’t think that those three, left for hours in a room by themselves, could come up with any innovative ideas or initiatives at all.

    1. When he mentions the other two, he gives them credit for work they haven’t done. They don’t deserve it. How many mental health related groups has Kate actually attended this year? Movie premieres and tennis games don’t count.

      1. +10000

        Mentioning his brother and sister in law who do very little is just them piggy backing upon Harry’s work and whatever Harry does to make them look better.

        1. I don’t believe that anymore, Ellie. I am convinced that Harry is all in on the new, modern view of ‘work’ via PR. The only difference is that when he shows up with them, he’s the only one who is charming. The guy is not a victim, not co-opted. He has agreed to this and as evidenced is gung-ho on disseminating the spin. Harry is just like his brother, entitled, sour and resentful. And mendacious. Oh, and lazy.

          1. I get you dislike Harry as much as you do everyone else in this family but imo judging by the way William treats Harry I doubt he has many options. I wouldn’t call Harry a victim either, it’s just how it is in this family and he has to toe the line with his brother.

            It just reminds me of how Harry has always been brought up to be his brother’s b*tch and out of loyalty of course he will, because he is the spare–he’s not the all important heir. He’s always there to make William look better. Look at the way the media still covers them! The golden boy vs the bad boy. And it started when they were young, and solidified people’s opinions of Harry when he was a /teenager/. (Same with the poor York girls.)

            I do think Harry does a lot of important work and would do far more not saddled with W&K. But it shows how unprepared they were for even W getting engaged; they were going to make W&H this royal duo, do things together, and shoehorned Kate in there. Now it’s Harry doing a lot, but all of them getting credit. It’s why people think W&K are so wonderful and work so hard… It’s a calculated PR move. I think Harry is involved, sure, but does he have a choice? Nope, I don’t think so. I don’t see him as a victim either but it is just how it works in this family, especially with everyone kow-towing to William and his every want and desire since he was born!

          2. I actually don’t dislike Harry, he’s just turned out to be like Willy, so disappointing, so anything you say after uttering that falsity is moot. Harry in my view is not a victim. He has a choice. He’s a *grown man* with way more options than you or I along with a huge sense of entitlement. On the other hand, I guess royalty has larger pressures on them and fewer choices than let’s say, the poor.

          3. Harry’a machinations are more palatable because he’s better looking and narurally charming, unlike his brother and sister in law. But once Harry’s hair goes the way of the dodo, I wonder how handsome he will look and thus how popular he will be?

  8. He does read from his notes, but unlike Kate and William, I BELIEVE him. He may be acting, but you could fool me. He comes off as so genuine and that he’s actually listening. When he’s asked questions, he seems to answer honestly, versus Kate, who seems to regurgitate some planned answer or answers too simply. He is the most popular for a reason.

      1. Long time reader. New commenter. I have always been a monarchist. Got bored with W & K a while ago. Although W comes across better without K and vice versa. As of today, my belief is that all three/four of the younger generation are in it only for what they can get out of it. Yes, Harry comes across best. Is that a good thing? Not so sure. They are all a waste of money.

  9. He’s a great hugger. I probably veer personally towards Kate’s approach to personal space but if it were my job I’d put a lot more effort into it 🙂

    There seems to be a big disconnect between the royals, their PR messages and the general public and then critical voices. What is the function of the younger members of the royal family now?
    To some degree they are just figureheads, of course they don’t write the speeches or have anything to offer of substance, so why does their PR try and spin their ‘work’ as meaningful?
    The work Charles does is largely unreported. That may mean he doesn’t bother with the type of insubstantial PR the youngers are going for and is playing a long game. I was amazed to see a short clip of him a few months ago (his comments about George and his first day of school) was the first time I have heard Charles speak in years. He came across so well.

  10. I learned to speak publicly before powerpoint or teleprompter was available. We were never meant to memorize speeches. Know them, yes. I learned to look at the audience most of the time and down at notes infrequently. But I absolutely required those notes. It would take me a very long time to memorize a speech of this length. I think Harry has room for improvement, but he’s doing okay.

    And the self-congratulatory note grates. Meghan does it too, and it’s just as bad. I hope someone advises them to knock it off. Maybe if they split off into the H&M show separate from the Cambridges, they won’t be encouraged to pat themselves on the back so much.

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