Ahead of the one year anniversary of the #iwill campaign driven by Step Up To Serve, HRH took part in his first Google+ Hangout to share social action stories and encourage more young people to become socially active. Prior to the Google Hangout HRH held a reception at his home, Clarence House. I was one of four #iwill Ambassadors that was invited to attend the reception and meet HRH.
It was like a scene from a movie. We were stood in one of HRH's front rooms at Clarence House where the reception took place, in a line awaiting his arrival. The Butler then opened the giant doors and HRH walked through following the board of trustees meeting he had just attended. Roxanne from Step Up To Serve introduced HRH to each of the ambassadors, I was the final one in the line.
When it came to my turn Roxanne said this is Daniel who runs a local area branch for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research. He placed his hand out to invite me to shake at, at which point I said 'its an honour to meet you'
He asked me how I become involved with Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research so I told him about my hero and that we want to help other people that are going through what James went through and he asked me if we are getting there. I told him we are inspiring a generation in our area and we have raised £56,000 since 2010, he couldn't believe the response I gave and said how incredible it was and how proud James would be.
He went on to ask when so many people are collecting money for so many charities how we have managed to raise such a large amount of money. I told him that we work tirelessly throughout the year hosting a wide range of events with an emphasis on making the events different to traditional forms of fundraising to maintain interest. He then jokingly said 'do you still have friends when you keep taking all their money off them?' To which I laughed and told him 'just about, but they are all incredibly supportive.’ He then moved along to meet some of the Step Up To Serve staff.
The reception then continued for another half an hour or so. The room was filled with trustees for Step Up To Serve that included MP's and business leaders that I got to meet and share my experiences with. To have met HRH was a true honour and an experience that I will never forget.
You can watch the Google Hangout with HRH and find out more about Step Up To Serve by visiting their website: www.stepuptoserve.org.uk