The Duchess of Sussex gave a personal message of support to sex workers in Bristol during a visit to charity One25 on Friday. Meghan and her husband Prince Harry were introduced to a former prostitute during the engagement, and told how the charity helps sex workers come off the streets. The organisation donates food, condoms, blankets and hot water bottles to the workers, as well as giving advice.
As the royals were shown the food bags being prepared in the charity's kitchen, Meghan came up with the idea of leaving messages of support for the sex workers, by writing words on a banana. "Oh actually do you have a Sharpie marker? I have an idea," Meghan said. "I saw this project this woman had started somewhere in the States on a school lunch programme. On each of the bananas she wrote an affirmation, to make the kids feel really, like, empowered. It was the most incredible idea – this small gesture."
Meghan wrote messages of support on the bananas
Meghan wrote a series of messages on the bananas which would be included in the food bags and sent out in the charity's outreach van. Picking up a marker, she said: "I am in charge of the banana messaging!" as she proceeded to write on some of the bananas: "You are strong", "You are loved", "You are brave" and "You are special". The Duchess helped pack food and warm clothing that will be distributed later on Friday evening.
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A charity volunteer who was a former sex worker, Sam, later said: "I can imagine being on the van, and 'Meghan wrote this thing, and what?' I think they might not eat it. I think that banana would be at home until it is rotten. Because I would do the same. It sounds really cheesy, but little things like that when you are out – especially tonight, we can see the weather – just to get that little thing… Meghan took her time out to write that one. It's lush."
The charity donates food to sex workers in Bristol
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Sam added: "It is amazing that they chose to come here. It is heartwarming, and makes you think that these women are not forgotten and not cared about." She spoke about how the charity helped her in the past, saying: "I was a service user, and One25 was there for me when I had no-one. They helped me keep my children, helped me keep a house. They helped me move on, and now I am trying to do the same for other women." The charity helps 150 women still trapped on Bristol's streets.
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