Prince Harry arrives at reception for one of his charities, MapAction, at the Royal Society on Sept. 26, in London.
(Photo: Chris Jackson Getty Images)
Prince Harry may be in training for a daunting race to the South Pole this winter but he's not letting it interfere with his expanding charitable work.
This evening in London, he stepped out to supportMapAction, an unusual charity he champions that works to deliver vital information in mapped form to disaster-aid agencies after catastrophes.
Harry's appearance tonight, dressed in a dapper blue suit, at a reception at the Royal Society, will likely help bring more attention to this unique non-profit organization, which provides a service few think about until they need it.
According to the organization's website, after a disaster, these "humanitarian mappers" go into the area and create a digital operational map: Which areas remain unreached? Where are relief supplies? Who are the people in greatest need? This is shared with volunteers and aid agencies so they can make decisions about where and how to deliver assistance quickly.
"MapAction harnesses technology to a powerful volunteer ethos," Harry says on MapAction's website. "They are a real asset to the humanitarian cause. I'm proud to be their patron."
It's the kind of unconventional approach to philanthropy that Harry, 29, is becoming known for, as in his adventure in Antarctica at the end of the year. He's helping lead a team of British veterans against teams of vets from America (led by actor Alexander Skarsgard) and Australia/Canadia (actor Dominic West) in a race to the South Pole to raise money for one of his other charities, Walking With The Wounded. They have all undergone grueling training sessions in icy climes, including spending the night in an ice chamber.
Meanwhile, the palace announced that the fourth-in-line to the throne will represent grandmother Queen Elizabeth II in Australia next month in a celebration of the island continent's Royal Navy, and would follow that on the way home with a trip to Dubai on Oct. 7 for a fundraising dinner for Harry's beloved African children's charity Sentebale.
And his love life? Still no word on whether he's moving closer to proposing to girlfriend Cressida Bonas, 24, a dancer and London society girl he's been dating for about a year. She was not with him at the Royal Society tonight, but she wouldn't be anyway, not unless and until she becomes Mrs. Prince Harry.