BRITISH SPOKEN word artist George the Poet will be performing at Prince Harry's Sentebale charity concert next month.
The Brit Award-nominated poet, real name George Mpanga, was recently appointed Sentebale ambassador, will join a host of other performers at the fundraising show taking place on June 28 in London.
The concert, in partnership with The Handa Foundation, and supported by Quintessentially Foundation, will raise funds and awareness of the challenges faced by adolescents living with HIV in sub-Saharan Africa.
Rock band Coldplay, British singer/songwriter Laura Mvula and the African-Norwegian duo Nico and Vinz will also perform to the 3,000-strong audience against the backdrop of Kensington Palace.
The money raised from the event will go towards Sentebale’s monthly Saturday clubs, caregiver days and residential week-long camps at the newly opened Mamohato Children’s Centre, delivering psychosocial support to children living with HIV in Lesotho, and later this year in Botswana.
Coldplay said: “We're delighted to join Prince Harry for this very special concert and to support Sentebale's incredible work with adolescents affected by HIV in Lesotho and Botswana.”
Over the past 20 years, progress has been made to reduce the number of new HIV infections globally and ensure people living with HIV access treatment. However stigma, discrimination and lack of education surrounding HIV/AIDS, means young people in Africa are increasingly dying when HIV- related deaths are decreasing for all other age groups. HIV is the number one cause of death in 10 to 19 year olds in Africa; it will only get worse unless we act now.
Founded by Prince Harry and Prince Seeiso of Lesotho in 2006, Sentebale delivers psychosocial support to adolescents living with HIV, as well as providing care and education to orphans, children living with disabilities and young shepherds, know as ‘herd boys’, whose cultural obligation of tending livestock prevents them accessing education.
Cathy Ferrier, CEO of Sentebale said: “UNAIDS estimates that only 30 per cent of adolescents believed to be living with HIV in Lesotho are accessing medication. HIV and AIDS, no longer needs to be a death sentence, but the problem will not go away unless we act now. Over the course of the next decade, it is our aim to change the tide of this epidemic."
She added: “At Sentebale, we are ever more committed to play our part and use all our resources to help and support many more children living with HIV. The concert is about bringing people together who can make a difference.”