Judging by the slick, minute-long video released this month by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s Archewell Foundation, the past year has been nothing short of a triumph.
Harry and Meghan have previously waited until the New Year to showcase the good works of their charitable foundation via a glitzy ‘impact’ film.
But this year’s offering — packed with group hugs, smiles, glamorous selfies and accompanied by a soaring soundtrack — appeared online just hours after the Princess of Wales shared a charming clip of herself with her three children helping at Windsor Baby Bank, a charity for families in need.
An unfortunate coincidence? Possibly.
But at the end of what has undoubtedly been a tumultuous year for them both, what one might call their ‘annus horribilis’, the Sussexes have plenty of reasons for trying to generate a bit of positive PR — not least the news that Archewell has suffered a plunge in annual donations of nearly $11 million (£8.6 million).
According to a public disclosure form filed last week with U.S. tax authorities, the charity recorded a deficit of $674,485 (£530,064) in 2022.
The $2 million (£1.6 million) it received from two anonymous donors in 2022 didn’t even cover its $2.67 million (£2 million) costs which, as well as grants to various good causes, included more than $425,000 (£333,982) spent on strategic support and PR.
More, in a moment, of the state of the foundation, three years after it was launched. More, too, of the fallout from the publication of Endgame, the controversial biography written by a journalist with close ties to the couple.
And more on what Meghan might be planning after being seen in an advert for her friend’s coffee company.
But let us return to the release of the Archewell video — followed by the couple’s Christmas card, showing them, all smiles, at the closing ceremony of last year’s Invictus Games — which coincided with Harry and Meghan’s appearance on The Hollywood Reporter’s ‘biggest losers of 2023’ list.