Before we get into the day’s events, I want to call out that Kensington Palace has added another engagement to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s schedule next week, meaning that we are seeing them today, tomorrow, Saturday, Monday and now next Wednesday. That would be a lot even if the couple were married and Meghan was a full-time royal, but I honestly can’t recall a window that chock-full for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge save foreign tours. Between Meghan’s participation CHOGM, her full dance card and her presence at historically family-only events, this engagement really is the first of its kind for the BRF.
Anyway, let’s get back to today, which kicked off with Meghan’s first appearance at CHOGM when she accompanied Harry at the closing session of the Commonwealth Youth Forum at the QEII Centre.
Her presence highlighted remarks made by Harry on Monday shortly after his new role as the Commonwealth Youth Ambassador was announced that she would be actively working alongside him in the position.
The couple met with the forum attendees, hearing more about their work on behalf of women and LGBT rights, among other issues. Meghan, who has previously expressed that she’s impressed with the organization of royal patronages, said to the group, “You’re so energized. You’ve got this umbrella to hold you together. It’s incredible. So stay in touch, maximize it.”
Per the Mail:
“Karuna Rana, 29, Mauritius, coordinator of the Commonwealth Youth Climate Change Network, complimented Miss Markle on the campaigning she has previously done on the issue of women’s rights. The pair discussed the HeForShe campaign, which encourages men to join women in the fight for equality.
“Miss Rana suggested that Miss Markle start her own SheForShe, to show that women were supportive of each other too. ‘She knew all about HeForShe and that she really liked the idea and that maybe she would consider it after May 20,’ she said.”
Another attendee from Kenya told reporters that Harry and Meghan confirmed that LGBT issues would be a cornerstone of their future work.
Royal reporter Rebecca English shared a funny video of the two at the start of the engagement:
Meanwhile, Harry later addressed the cultural divide with his American fiancee when he said to the room, “Don’t get sucked into the system, of putting on a band aid, American style.” He then turned to Meghan and explained she would have to start calling them “plasters,” prompting laughter.
Today Meghan wore a pinstriped Altuzarra dress with a black Camilla and Marc blazer over her shoulders. The cross-body bag is Orton and her heels are black suede Tamara Mellon.
The heels were the real winner today, though I did like this look overall. Had Meghan actually worn the blazer I do think it would have upped the polish a bit, but there was something informal and “springtime” about the ensemble that I’m into given I’m just so relieved to be out the other side of winter!
As for the rest of the Windsor clan, the Duchess of Cornwall sat in on a roundtable discussion in the Women’s Forum. Camilla has done considerable work on behalf of women through her public patronages, including on issues such as domestic violence and sexual assault. Today’s conversation was focused on abuses within the workplace, which is certainly timely in light of the last six months.
She also delivered a speech, captured here by Rebecca English:
Shared by royal reporter Emily Nash:
The Prince of Wales and his brother, the Duke of York, both attended the Malaria No More Summit this afternoon. It was announced last week that Prince Andrew was taking over as patron of the charity, while Bill Gates currently serves as the CEO. The organization’s mission, as may be obvious from its name, is to eradicate malaria worldwide.
Personally, I was interested to see Charles and Andrew carry out an engagement together. I can’t remember the last time we’ve seen that.
Finally, earlier in the day Charles hosted a reception at Clarence House for the Prince’s Trust. Laudable for sure, but I was mainly charmed by the Prince wearing his sunnies in the garden:
Tomorrow will be a big day and I’ll probably break it up into at least two posts in light of the state dinner in the evening, Meghan and Harry’s engagement in the afternoon and all the other receptions. See you then!