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On my best behaviour with Princess Anne

Some days the life of a HIV policy adviser is surreal. The other day I was a guest at a Save the Children garden party in the company of the HRH, The Princess Royal at the delightful Chelsea Physic Garden in London. It was chance to tell people about our new global campaign to dramatically cut the number of babies and young children who die.

I’d been asked to be on my best behaviour. I can get quite passionate when I get onto my specialist area – children and AIDS – and people can get upset if they’re not on the same wavelength!

Princess Anne is President of Save the Children. So when she came over, I grabbed the opportunity to give her a 30-second overview of what I do. I wasn’t sure what — if anything — a member of the British royal family would know about the work that’s going on to help AIDS-affected children in faraway countries in Africa and Asia.

I was completely taken aback when Princess Anne started talking knowledgeably and enthusiastically about the memory books project in Uganda. Memory books are used widely in African countries to support children whose parents have died from AIDS. She urged the other guests to support Save the Children to do more of this kind of work.

It was a moving performance, and showed her deep commitment to children who are growing up in the middle of the AIDS crisis. It confirmed that Save the Children is the right organisation fighting for the right cause. Do you want to get involved in our campaign?

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