Princes William and Harry set up charity for poor children

 

Prince William and Prince Harry have used money left to them by their mother to secretly set up a charity.

The brothers are believed to have donated a six-figure sum to create a foundation funding causes for underprivileged children and wounded servicemen.

The organisation was only ratified by the Charities Commission last month and will not be in a position to make grants for several years, but the young royals insist it will be a life-long commitment.

Princes Harry and William will use a new charity to focus on young people, sustainable development and veterans affairs

Princes Harry and William will use a new charity to focus on young people, sustainable development and veterans affairs

It is being run out of their office at St James's Palace, with the blessing of Prince Charles. A chief executive has been appointed as well as a board of trustees which includes Charles's divorce lawyer Fiona Shackleton.

The charity - which doesn't have a name yet - will focus on three main areas - young people, sustainable development at home and overseas, and veterans affairs and the welfare of wounded servicemen.

The princes hope to use their profile to raise cash from wealthy private individuals and institutions.

They have also invested a 'significant' amount of their own money to help get the charity up and running and will continue to make top-up payments.

Although William, 27, and Harry, 25, earn modest salaries as serving military officers, they have inherited substantial sums from the late Queen Mother and Princess Diana.

Both received around £9million from their mother's estate which is being held in trust until their 30th birthday.

But they are entitled to use the estimated £300,000 it is acruing in interest each year.

Last night Clarence House confirmed the charity, which is operating under the name The Foundation of Prince William and Prince Harry, was up and running.

A spokesman said: 'The Princes have always recognised that they can bring profile to good initiatives, to help get great charitable endeavours off the ground and to encourage others to support these.

Their support can often have a "multiplying effect" on charities' work.'

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