Last week, Prince Harry was in South America on an official Royal visit. He spent the first four days in Brazil, before traveling to Chile, proving a big hit with the country – and not just for his prowess at fixing television sets.
After carrying out a number of engagements on Friday, as reported by Royal Central, Prince Harry visited a Chilean community in Valparaiso on Saturday. The community had been badly affected by a devastating wildfire earlier this year, during which 15 people lost their lives and thousands more were left homeless. The Latin American charity TECHO is currently helping villagers to build shacks out of chipboard and corrugated iron, so that they have a place to stay until they can get back on their feet. Prince Harry met with crowds who had come out to see him, before going to take a closer look at the temporary shelters of three families who had lost their homes in the fire.
Among those was the home of Coca Perez. Upon entering the family’s home, Harry noticed that their television wasn’t working and set about trying to repair it himself. Said Mrs Perez: “He looked at it and he started to fiddle with the cable. He managed to get it working so we could watch Chile playing Brazil later. Now I can tell everyone that Prince Harry is my TV repair man!”
Prince Harry also had a chat with members of the British Volunteers Fire Station who had tried their best to control the unruly flames. One of the volunteers, Mr. Alvarez, said about the Prince: [He] was very interested in our work, but he was quite surprised that we have to pay a small fee to volunteer, and that we don’t receive any salary. He was also very surprised to see people living up in the hills in tents when it is so cold. I am lucky – I have a job so hopefully I can save the money to rebuild my home.”
His Royal Highness also met students and teachers from the local British School, as well as retired firefighters, before going to a nearby restaurant, where he met British Ambassador Fiona Clouder and watched the World Cup match between Chile and Brazil. Unfortunately, his host country lost to Brazil in the penalty shootout.
On his last day, Prince Harry visited Fundación Amigos de Jésus, a daycare centre for children with mental and physical disabilities. He spoke to and interacted with the children, laughing, joking, showing of his dance moves and even participating in a game! The Prince also seems to have made a few friends during the visit. Four year-old Russell, who is suffering from Down’s Syndrome, gave Harry a high-five, while seven-year old Pascal took the microphone away from him just as he was about the make a speech.
The 29 year-old royal embarked on a tour of the facility by its founder, Gladis Ramirez. Herself the mother of a disabled child, she started the centre to look after those children whose parents work and cannot take care of them as they would like. The foundation also runs a small bakery, selling breads and pastries made by the children at the local market.
To conclude the tour, the Prince visited an outdoor activity centre near the Andes, where he joined a small group of children who were riding on motorbikes. Unfortunately, Harry was not feeling his best and did not ride with the children as planned.
Photo Credit: With thanks to @byemilyandrews, Royal Correspondent for The Sun