Prince Harry returned to Lesotho, Africa, today on a charity trip, and one of the first things he did was learn a little sign language so he could communicate with deaf kids supported by his children's charity, Sentebale.
Harry, 28, a British Army captain who has just returned from a four-month deployment to Afghanistan, arrived in southern Africa Monday on a three-day visit to Sentebale projects, but today was the only public part of the trip.
The soon-to-be fourth-in-line to the throne has been in the headlines more often in recent days for his love life; since his return from the war zone he has been busy renewing his relationship with a sometime girlfriend, Cressida Bonas. Their recent Swiss ski trip included lots of public displays of affection, to the delight of the paparazzi.
But today was all about Sentebale (the name in the local language means "forget me not"), which Harry founded with a friend, Prince Seeiso of Lesotho, in memory of both their mothers. The kingdom of Lesotho is a former British protectorate and one of the poorest nations in Africa. Nearly half the population of 1.8 million are under 18 and a third of those are orphans or vulnerable.
Harry started with a visit to a school for deaf children, where he performed some dance moves with the kids, donned a teddy-bear apron to cook traditional sweet bread cakes and learned a little sign language from the children in a classroom, according to British media reports.
Both princes joined in as the class took them through the sign language for the phrase, "We love Prince Harry and Prince Seeiso," according to The Telegraph.
He also was to visit a school for the blind, where he would watch kids learning Braille and play some football, and inspect a church project that helps bring housing and clean water for needy communities.
He is winding up the day at a Sentebala fundraising gala in neighboring Johannesburg, where he is scheduled to attend a reception and give a speech, according to palace press officials. The dinner is to raise funds for a new project Sentebale is launching to build a center for young people and children with HIV/AIDS.
Maria Puente, USA TODAY