The Prince of Wales has given an interview with ITV’s This Morning in support of You Can Be Heroes week, launching on Monday 7th January.
His Royal Highness is keen to sustain the positive atmosphere and pride that was felt throughout the UK following the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and Diamond Jubilee.
During an interview at Clarence House, The Prince’s official London residence, with This Morning hosts Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby, The Prince said: “These sorts of occasions like the Olympics and the Jubilee bring out the best in people and I do know, from doing investitures on behalf of The Queen, just how many wonderful people there are doing these remarkable things and volunteering the whole time in their own communities. A lot of people don’t realise how so many of these people keep the whole show on the road. There is something remarkable in this country I think, about the volunteering spirit.”
As either Founder or President of organisations such as The Prince's Trust, Business in the Community, and Youth United, who all rely on volunteers, The Prince of Wales said: “What I wanted to do with Youth United was to get all the uniformed services and others together to talk to them about how we could expand the opportunities. For many young people to do this (join youth uniformed services) I then discovered there is something like an 80,000 waiting list to get into the Scouts and Guides and most people have no idea about this. So there are a massive number of young people out there who want to, but can’t. Part of the reason is that they can’t find enough adult volunteers. Hopefully with the Olympics and all the interest we have more people who would like to get involved.”
Viewers will also have a chance to see behind the scenes footage of The Prince and the Duchess of Cornwall from last year’s Diamond Champions initiative, which celebrated the role of older volunteers who give their time to improve the lives of those around them. The hugely successful campaign was organised by the Women’s Royal Voluntary Service and in total 4,573 people were nominated as Diamond champions, representing 249 charities. Their Royal Highnesses who were Patrons of the initiative can be seen meeting the finalists at a reception at St James’s Palace.
The Prince of Wales also found time to speak of other, more personal areas of his life. When asked about the prospect of becoming a grandfather, The Prince explained how some passions are important for his, and every, grandchild. The Prince of Wales added, “I’ve gone on for years about the importance of thinking about the long term in relation to the environmental damage, climate change and everything else. We don’t, in a sensible world, want to hand on an increasingly dysfunctional world to our grandchildren, to leave them with the real problem. I don’t want to be confronted by my future grandchild and them say ‘why didn’t you do something’, so clearly now that we will have a grandchild, it makes it even more obvious to try and make sure we leave them something that isn’t a total poisoned chalice.”
Talking about his worries for son Prince Harry – and families in a similar situation – who are serving their country within the Armed Forces.
The Prince of Wales said, “If you are a parent or relation to a loved one and that person is away in these incredibly dangerous and challenging circumstances, I know you worry all the time. Certainly every night I worry. But he [Prince Harry] loves doing what he’s doing and he’s brilliant at it.” Before adding, “I constantly meet the families of those who have lost their sons, husbands, brothers or sisters… and I have some understanding at least of what they go through.”
Viewers can see the full interview with The Prince of Wales on Monday 7th January.
During This Morning’s You Can Be Heroes Week viewers will also witness what goes on within some of The Prince’s Charities and other such organisations, see the work the volunteers carry out and also learn how they can volunteer in their local area too.