Kids everywhere can benefit from the new ‘Princess Diana Legacy’

Do you know a child who is selflessly transforming the lives of others? The new Diana Legacy is encouraging kids’ good deeds, and accepting worthy nominations for an award in her name.

Princess Diana meets with John Collins, a lung cancer patient while touring Northwestern Memorial Hospital's Hospice- Palliative Care Unit in Chicago, June 1996. Sue Ogrocki | AFP

One of the benefits for those of us over age 40 is that we were able to see the late Princess Diana in action: helping the homeless, physically reaching out to HIV and AIDS sufferers when the disease was still unknown and feared, highlighting the suffering of landmine victims, among countless other charity works. We witnessed an extraordinary woman with extraordinary empathy who tried to improve the lives of others. Younger generations who didn’t see these acts during her lifetime are more likely to know her as Prince Will and Prince Harry’s mom who died in a car crash, or perhaps as an ’80s and early ’90s style icon.

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So it’s important that we keep her charitable ideals and legacy alive for the next generation—and that’s precisely what the British government is aiming to do. The Diana Award was established in 1999 recognizing the achievements of “young people going above and beyond in their daily lives to create and sustain positive change.” And this year, to mark the 20 year anniversary of Princess Diana’s death, the charity has also created The Diana Legacy, a program that will “stage a series of events targeted at children aged nine to 18 to bring her achievements to the attention of a new generation.”

So far The Diana Legacy is a year of events that will include:

An app: “My True Selfie” is an application that will encourage youngsters to stay true to themselves when posting the obligatory selfie on social media—whether that means #nomakeup or forgoing any filter enhancements. Let’s hope it helps put an end to pouting, posing, and heavily-made-up faces. (And you know we at For Her are fully behind this kind of push for showing off your #soulbeauty!)

MORE TO READ: Model bravely reveals true face without makeup

A National Kindness Day: taking place in March, this special day will emphasize the importance of helping others in small ways. As Princess Diana herself once said: “Carry out a random act of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you.”

International award: good news for those of us Stateside; the Diana Award is open to international nominees, so if you know a worthy candidate then you can put their names forward to win this prestigious award.

And more initiatives and events to come. We can only guess that they’ll continue to emulate Diana’s good works, such as the ones pictured below:

Diana’s sons, Princes William and Harry, as well as her brother, Earl Spencer, will be involved in the charity events surrounding the campaign to some extent, though full details have not been released yet. Their support of The Diana Legacy is a lovely statement: When we remember those we love and cherish we need to ensure their good deeds, inner beauty, sense of grace, or even just their funny anecdotes and joyful memories get passed down to future generations.

MORE TO READ: The remarkable friendship between Mother Teresa & Princess Diana

Hopefully this award will not only let us remember Diana for her heart and spirit, but give tweens and teens the opportunity to demonstrate how even the youngest of us have the power to effect positive change in our communities. And that good deeds and kindness are how people can truly leave a mark on this world, and live on past their years.

Cerith Gardiner
Cerith Gardiner

Cerith Gardiner was born in London and has been living in Paris for 14 years. She spends her time working as an English consultant, acting as taxi driver to her four children, and wondering if she’ll ever be as stylish as the French.

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