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Prince Harry, Meghan Champion Mental Health Awareness in Nigeria

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle embarked on a meaningful visit to Nigeria on Friday, advocating for mental health awareness as part of their promotion of the Invictus Games, a sporting event dedicated to wounded military veterans.
Arriving in the Nigerian capital Abuja, the royal couple commenced their visit by opening an event on mental health at a local school, the Lightway Academy.
Welcomed by enthusiastic pupils and a vibrant display of Igbo drumming and dancing, Prince Harry and Meghan engaged with students.
During his interaction with students, Prince Harry underscored the significance of destigmatizing mental health issues, urging open conversations to combat stigma effectively.
“If you take anything away from today, just know that mental health affects every single person,” he told students, wearing a traditional Nigerian bead necklace around his neck.
“The more you talk about it the more you can kick stigma away.”
Meghan joined the Duke of Sussex on the stage before they left for a meeting with Nigerian military commanders as part of the Invictus programme.
Reflecting on the visit, student Nnena Edeh, 13, expressed admiration for Prince Harry’s inspiring presence, encapsulating the positive impact of the royal couple’s engagement with the school community.
“It was really cool. I just wanted to touch him,” said student Nnena Edeh, 13,as the prince left the school. “It was really inspiring.”
Prince Harry was in London on Wednesday to mark the 10th anniversary of the games. As with all his trips to the UK since he moved to the United States in 2020, his visit prompted fresh speculation over a reconciliation with his family.
Harry, a former army captain who served as a helicopter pilot in Afghanistan, founded Invictus in 2014. Since then the games have expanded boosting rehabilitation through sports.
Last year, former Nigerian soldier Peacemaker Azuegbulam who lost his leg in combat made history by clinching a gold medal at the games in Germany.
During his visit to Nigeria, Prince Harry is scheduled to participate in a sporting event in Abuja, followed by a visit to a military hospital in Kaduna to meet with troops wounded in combat.
The royal itinerary also includes a visit to Lagos.
Nigeria’s military forces are currently grappling with various security challenges, including a jihadist insurgency in the northeast killing more than 40,000 people and displaced another 2 million more since 2009, including criminal activities by armed groups know as bandits in the northwest and central regions.
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