Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, aka the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, have organized a fundraiser to provide COVID-19 vaccines to those in underserved communities and countries in honor of their son Archie's second birthday.
For the next 10 days, all donations made to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, will be matched by three different organizations, meaning that a $5 donation (which buys one vaccine) will result in a $20 donation to the vaccine equity organization.
In a statement posted on their charity foundation Archewell's website on Thursday, Harry and Meghan said the Mastercard Impact Fund, the Seadream Family Foundation, and an unnamed third charity will be matching donations made in honor of Archie's birthday of up to $3 million.
"We cannot think of a more resonant way to honor our son’s birthday," they said.
"We have been deeply touched over the past two years to feel the warmth and support for our family in honor of Archie’s birthday," the couple said. "Many of you donate to charities on his behalf, and mark the occasion by giving back or doing an act of service — all through the goodness of your hearts. You raise funds for those who need it most, and continue to do so organically and selflessly. We remain incredibly grateful."
A Sussex spokesperson confirmed to BuzzFeed News that the fundraiser was arranged in a partnership with Global Citizen’s Vax Live COVID-19 vaccine equity campaign, of which Harry and Meghan are cochairs.
Duke and Duchess of Sussex / Archewell / Via archewell.com
Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor was born May 6, 2019, at Portland Hospital, a private hospital in Westminster, UK, at 5:26 a.m. local time. He is currently the seventh in line to the British throne.
On Archie's birthday last year, Harry and Meghan released a video of the duchess reading the children's book Duck! Rabbit! to their son as part of the #SaveWithStories coronavirus relief campaign.
Later that month, Archie also made a special guest appearance in the first Spotify podcast produced by Harry and Meghan's company, Archewell Audio, to wish listeners a happy new year.
In the nearly year and a half since they announced that they would be "stepping back" from life as working members of the royal family, Meghan and Harry have been criticized for giving interviews to certain media outlets and sharing images of their family, because of what Meghan described to Oprah Winfrey in an unaired clip from her and her husband's incendiary interview as a "false narrative" perpetuated by the (mostly UK) press.
"I've never talked about privacy," Meghan said. "I think everyone has a basic right to privacy. Basic. We're not talking about anything that anybody else wouldn't expect."
Harpo Productions / CBS
"I think life is about being able to share our stories and share parts of our lives that you're comfortable with," she said.
"There's no one who's on Instagram or social media that would say, 'Because I shared this one picture, that entitles you to have my entire camera roll. Go ahead and look through it.' No one would want that. So it's about boundaries. And it's about respect."