by Corinne Heller | Wed., Mar. 18, 2015 9:27 AM
Prince Harry met with five wounded war veterans he plans to accompany for part a 1,000-mile charity walk through the United Kingdom, two days after he announced he is leaving the British military.
The "Walk of Britain" takes place between Aug. 22 and Oct. 31 and its route runs between Scotland and London. The event aims to raise awareness and funds for the organization Walking With the Wounded, which offers support to veterans who suffered physical, mental or social injuries in the line of duty. Harry, 30, is a royal patron of the charity and has taken part in its past treks.
The five-member team is made up of Scott Ransley, Alec Robotham, Matt Fisher, Elspeth De Montes and Stewart Hill. Harry announced their names at Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park in London.
"I'm delighted to say that I will be joining the team for a small part of their journey and I'm hugely looking forward to it," BBC News quoted him as saying.
Harry, a former British Army Apache helicopter pilot who served two tours in Afghanistan, announced on Monday that he was leaving the military in June after 10 years of service. He did not specify a reason. In January 2014, palace officials announced Harry would quit his role as an Apache helicopter pilot after three years and would take a staff officer position in London.
After he completes his service, he will spend part of the summer doing volunteer work alongside field-based conservation experts in Africa, "learning how local communities in sub-Saharan Africa are working to protect and conserve their natural resources and wildlife," and in the fall, he will "return to work in a voluntary capacity with the Ministry of Defense's Recovery Capability Program, while actively considering other longer term employment opportunities," the British Monarchy said in a statement on Tuesday.
"Prince Harry will continue to support case officers at London District's Personnel Recovery Unit, working with both those who are administering and receiving physical and mental care within the London District area," it said. "This will enable him to continue developing his knowledge of the entire recovery process, placing him in an informed position to further support wounded, injured, or sick servicemen and women into the future."
In addition, Harry will continue his royal charity work.
In 2013, Harry had taken part in the Walking for the Wounded charity's South Pole Challenge, a 200-mile expedition to the South Pole. He had also embarked on a trek with wounded servicemen on an expedition to the North Pole in 2011.
The prince said on Wednesday that Walking With the Wounded "has given men and women the opportunity to push themselves to extremes in some of the most inhospitable places on Earth—both the Poles and Mount Everest. The challenge we are launching today, although closer to home, is no less formidable in scale—walking 1,000 miles around Britain," according to BBC News.
Harry is also a royal patron of the Invictus Games, an international sporting event for wounded and ill military servicemen and women from 13 countries.
In 2012, the prince was awarded the the Atlantic Council Award for Distinguished Humanitarian Leadership for his charitable work on behalf of wounded vets.
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