Prince Harry and Meghan Markle steered clear of inviting many politicians or foreign royals to their wedding. But there was one member of an outside royal family who snagged an invite—Prince Seeiso of Lesotho. But this wasn’t a mere diplomatic courtesy; the two princes have been close collaborators for more than a decade, joined by their commitment to charity work.
Prince Harry and Prince Seeiso of Lesotho during the Sentebale Concert at Kensington Palace on June 28, 2016 in London.
Prince Seeiso is the youngest brother of the king of Lesotho; in 2006, Harry and Seeiso founded Sentebale, a charity that aims to help vulnerable and HIV positive children in both Lesotho and Botswana. Ever since then, the two have worked closely together. Both Princess Diana and Seeiso’s mother, Queen ‘Mamohato, worked closely with HIV and AIDS charities during their lifetimes, and Sentebale, which translates to “forget me not,” was created as a
Prince Harry and Prince William dance with Prince Seeiso as they visit the Mamahato Network Club for children affected by HIV at King Letsie's Palace on June 17,
2010 in Maseru, Lesotho.
Seeiso and Harry first met in 2004. Harry, who was 19 at the time, was on his gap year between high school and college and spent two months working in Lesotho. “I was lucky enough to have an amazing guide in Prince Seeiso,” Harry wrote on Sentebale’s website. “His knowledge and compassion for his country showed me that there could be a way of making a difference in Lesotho that would go far beyond the building projects I worked on.”
Prince Harry takes a photograph of Prince Seeiso during a photography activity at the Mamohato Children's Centre on October 17, 2015 in Maseru, Lesotho.
Seeiso has recently opened up about seeing Harry mature into the adult he is today, while still maintaining a childlike spirit. “Everywhere he goes, I think, he bonds a lot faster, a lot quicker with the children. Harry is one big child, basically,” Seeiso told CBS This Morning. “Recently, you can see that he has grown, and his opinions are very informed because he has seen how we have grown in Sentebale.”
Prince Harry and Prince Seeiso of Lesotho join Coldplay on stage during the Sentebale Concert at Kensington Palace on June 28, 2016 in London.
Seeiso said he hadn’t met Meghan
Prince Seeiso and Princess Mabereng of Lesotho leave Westminster Abbey in London following Prince William and Kate Middleton's wedding in 2011.
“It’s going to be a glorious day. Everybody is very excited, especially the children,” Seeiso told CBS before Harry's wedding. “They have grown, they have seen him grow, they say, oh, congratulations to him. He’s more than family – like I said, he’s a brother.”
This story originally appeared on Townandcountrymag.com.
* Minor edits have been made by the Townandcountry.ph editors.