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It's OK to have a bad day, Harry tells students

Update : 10 May 2024, 20:48

Prince Harry told students in Nigeria it was okay to have a bad day, as he and Meghan began a three-day visit to the country.

The Duke of Sussex told children at a mental health summit in Abuja “there’s no shame to acknowledge that today is a bad day, that you left school feeling stressed”.

The visit comes after Harry concluded a brief visit to London, where he told the BBC it had been "great" to be back in the UK.

Their visit is part of a series of events linked to the Invictus Games, the sporting event for injured servicemen and women founded by Prince Harry which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. 


The couple landed in Abuja on Friday morning, and began their visit with a tour of Lightway Academy, a primary and secondary school in the capital city.

They were greeted by traditional dancers and met some of the primary schoolchildren.

One group of year five pupils told the BBC they were really excited about the visit, saying they hope it will raise their school's profile.

During their tour the couple visited a kindergarten class where children aged up to five danced and sang - at one point, the visitors got to their feet and joined the class in singing Jump Up, Turn Around.

The couple mentioned their own family: Archie, who turned five earlier this month, and two-year-old Lilibet.

Meghan said that dancing was Lilibet's favourite class, adding: "Maybe it’s all the jumping around."

During a visit to a STEM class, when pupils showed the robot cars they had created, the duchess said that Archie also liked construction.

When told by the class that they would be showing the robot cars in class one day, Meghan said: "We will have to come back for the exhibition." 

The couple then spoke to students to deliver remarks launching a two-day mental health summit.

Meghan began by telling the audience: “We have got to acknowledge those amazing dance moves” saying Harry was excited and nearly jumped up to join.

Harry asked the children to put their hands up if the words "mental health" scare them or if they know what they mean, before going on to talk about the stigma surrounding mental health worldwide.

The duke told the children the message he wanted them to remember was that mental health affects everyone in the world.

"The more you talk about it, the more you can kick it in the long grass”.

He made the children promise, after Friday, not to be scared of talking about their mental health, and ended his speech with: “It’s okay, not to be okay.”

He then handed the microphone to Meghan who joked: “Do you see why I married him he’s so smart."

She then went on to encourage the children to share their stories, saying that Lilibet once said to her: “Mama, I see me in you.”

Even though she meant literally, Meghan said she hung onto the words, saying she sees herself in her daughter but also all the students there.

“I believe in you”, she told them. Source: BBC 

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