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Lepra’s Royal Patronage

8 May 2024

We are proud and honoured to announce that His Majesty The King has chosen to continue Lepra’s patronage, in the footsteps of his beloved mother, Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
Lepra’s relationship with the Royal Family began in 1924, when the Prince of Wales, the future King Edward VIII, became patron of the British Empire Leprosy Relief Association (BELRA), now known as Lepra. He was succeeded by his brother, His Majesty King George VI and his daughter Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II who became Lepra’s patron in 1952.
Her Late Majesty had a deep empathy for our cause, born in her engagement with children affected by leprosy in Nigeria who she met when she visited the country in her youth. Throughout her patronage, she demonstrated incredible compassion for our cause and organisation. Her Late Majesty kept neglected tropical diseases in the public consciousness, and helped challenge perceptions about diseases like leprosy and lymphatic filariasis (LF).
A statement from Buckingham Palace confirmed that 376 of Her Late Majesty’s charity patronages were to be retained by the Royal Family, adding that: 

Royal patronage highlights the vital work of these organisations and allows their many achievements and valuable contributions to society to be more widely recognised and promoted.

On 7 May 2024, we received a letter from The Palace, informing us that King Charles III was to continue our Royal patronage. To receive such news, particularly in our centenary year is not only an incredible honour for the organisation, but also a direct and potent message of hope and solidarity for the people we support. 

One hundred years on, we are thankful that the Royal Family continue to shine the brightest of lights on leprosy and LF, and will continue to until we are needed no more.

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