Harry said he was “honored to be sharing the stage” with the longtime champion of change.
The pair went to Aids 2018 summit in Amsterdam on Tuesday, where they announced the launch of the billion-dollar project called the MenStar Coalition.
The coalition is made up of the Elton John’s AIDS Foundation, Johnson & Johnson, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and will focus on “delivering effective HIV/AIDS services for men,” including increased testing and treatment of the disease.
Elton John loves a good royal collaboration. His long and meaningful friendship with Princess Diana has led to a continued relationship with the royal family, from his performance at Diana’s funeral to his attendance at both William and Harry’s weddings. Now, the singer is back in the Duke of Sussex’s life—and this time they’re working together. Attending the International AIDS Conference together for at least the second time, this time in Amsterdam, the two announced a new effort to continue their fight against AIDS.
On Tuesday, John and Harry launched the MenStar Coalition, an initiative aimed at targeting and preventing HIV infections in men, Harry said in his speech announcing MenStar on Tuesday.
“I am honored to be sharing the stage with someone who has always put people at the center of his work, Sir Elton John,” Harry said. “For over a quarter-century, Elton has worked tirelessly to fund research and services in communities around the world. And today, he has come to Amsterdam to announce his latest endeavor, a billion-dollar global partnership to break the cycle of male transmission of HIV, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa.”
Harry said that MenStar was largely inspired by the “growing alarm of the rate of new HIV infections among young women.” He said this was caused by “the lack of awareness of HIV prevention amongst hard-to-reach young men.”
John and Harry’s late mother shared a devotion to fighting AIDS. On the 20th anniversary of her death last year, the Elton John AIDS Foundation posted a photo of Diana visiting an AIDS patient in 1989.