Why Prince Harry received a standing ovation in LA over the weekend

Naomi Gordon
·2-min read

Watch: Prince Harry attends 'Vax Live' concert: 'I believe that misinformation is a global humanitarian crisis'

The Duke of Sussex received rapturous applause and a standing ovation as he arrived on stage at the Global Citizen's Vax Live concert in LA on Sunday night (May 2).

Prince Harry praised the world's frontline medical workers and spoke about the importance of making vaccinations borderless. 

Appearing alongside a host of famous stars, including Jennifer Lopez, Selena Gomez and H.E.R, Harry addressed the crowd: "Tonight is a celebration of each of you here, the vaccinated frontline workers in the audience and the millions of frontline heroes around the world.

"You spent the last year battling courageously and selflessly to protect us all. You served and sacrificed, put yourselves in harm's way, and acted with bravery, knowing the costs. We owe you an incredible debt of gratitude."

Photo credit: Emma McIntyre - Getty Images
Photo credit: Emma McIntyre - Getty Images

The event, billed as "the concert to reunite the world", was raising funds for Covax, which is working to provide vaccines for low and middle-income countries. The audience was comprised of fully vaccinated frontline healthcare and essential workers. 

Photo credit: Kevin Winter - Getty Images
Photo credit: Kevin Winter - Getty Images

The duke continued: "The virus does not respect borders, access cannot be determined by geography. It must be a basic right for all. We must look beyond ourselves with empathy and compassion for those we know and those we don't. What we do in this moment will stand in history."

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Ben Affleck, Gayle King, Jimmy Kimmel and Sean Penn also took part in the event to share their messages advocating the importance of vaccine equity.  

Ahead of the concert, Prince Harry and Meghan had released the joint statement: "Over the past year, our world has experienced pain, loss, and struggle – together. Now we need to recover and heal - together.

"We can’t leave anybody behind. We will all benefit, we will all be safer, when everyone, everywhere has equal access to the vaccine. We must pursue equitable vaccine distribution, and, in that, restore faith in our common humanity. This mission couldn’t be more critical or important."

Photo credit: Kevin Mazur - Getty Images
Photo credit: Kevin Mazur - Getty Images

Meghan, who is heavily pregnant with their second child, was not in attendance. 

It was Harry's first public appearance since attending the funeral of Prince Philip, which was held at St George's Chapel in Windsor on April 17. 

Watch: Who Is Prince Harry?

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