It's official: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are parting ways with Prince William and Kate Middleton. The Palace announced on Thursday (June 20) the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will be leaving their shared charity, The Royal Foundation, with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
“The Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and The Duke and Duchess of Sussex has today announced the conclusions of a review into its structure, and how it will best support Their Royal Highnesses with future charitable activity,” the Palace's statement read.
For the past several years, Prince Harry, Prince William, and Duchess Kate worked together under The Royal Foundation. Now that Prince Harry is starting a household of his own with Meghan, though, it makes sense for them to branch out on their own. Just because their officially parting ways in order to pursue individual charitable efforts, the Sussexes and Cambridges will still collaborate on projects from time to time.
“Later this year The Royal Foundation will become the principal charitable and philanthropic vehicle for The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will establish their own new charitable foundation with transitional operating support from The Royal Foundation," the statement continued. "In addition both couples will continue to work together on projects in the future, including on The Foundation’s mental health program, Heads Together.”
Though the schism is designed to "best complement the work and responsibilities of Their Royal Highnesses as they prepare for their future roles," it's still a little bittersweet to see the Royal Fab Four go their separate ways. Well, professionally, at least.
“The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are incredibly proud of what they have achieved together through The Royal Foundation. They are especially proud to have established a charity that has had, and will continue to have, significant long-lasting impact, changing lives for the better,” the statement concluded.
This announcement comes as no surprise to many royal watchers. Meghan and Harry have already separated their offices and social media accounts from William and Kate's over the past couple months. William and Harry's roles in the Royal Family, which were once very similar as second and third in line for the throne, respectively, for most of their lives, will continue to evolve over the years. William is, of course, still second in line to throne. Harry, however, has been bumped down to sixth after the arrival of nephews and niece.
As a direct heir to the throne, William "has less flexibility [in his charity work] because of his constitutional obligations,” a source explained to People. Harry, on the other hand, “is now married, has started a family and is not constitutionally bound [like William]. It is a natural progression.”
Best of luck to William, Kate, Harry and Meghan as they follow their own paths.