Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are taking the first steps to make the Los Angeles area their home, volunteering this week to deliver meals to vulnerable residents locked down in West Hollywood.
The couple volunteered on Easter Sunday and again on Wednesday to deliver meals via Project Angel Food to people with critical illnesses in West Hollywood, according to ET.
“They told us they heard our drivers were overloaded and wanted to volunteer to lighten the drivers’ workload,” Project Angel Food’s executive director Richard Ayoub told the outlet Thursday. Harry and Meghan reportedly adhered to social-distancing guidelines and wore masks and gloves.
“I am blown away that they chose us. They care about our vulnerable population,” Ayoub said.
One meal recipient at an apartment building they visited described what happened after he answered a call saying meals had arrived for him and a neighbor — and the former royals showed up.
“They were both nice and very down-to-earth people,” Dan Tyrell told Wehoville. “They had masks on, and they were dressed down with jeans, but very nice jeans. I thought that tall red-headed guy looked pretty familiar, and that girl was very pretty. Then I saw the large black SUVs with the security guards behind them.”
The local charitable effort comes after the couple announced Wednesday that they were donating $112,000 — excess profit that came after televising their wedding in 2018 via the BBC — to Feeding Britain, a food bank that’s helping people affected by COVID-19.
The prince, who is no longer calling himself royal, also had the bandwidth to reach out to people back home, video chatting over the Easter weekend with a couple of parents of children with complex health conditions. The talk, on behalf of Britain’s WellChild charity, revolved around the challenges the families are facing during lockdown.
“I can’t even begin to imagine how hard it is for you guys,” he told the parents at one point. “Having one kid at 11 months old is enough!”
The relatively new dad — Archie turns 1 in May — talked about some of the positives in the current situation, like being able to have family time.
“So much family time that you almost think, ‘Do I feel guilty for having so much family time?’” he said on the video chat. “You’ve got to celebrate those moments where you are just on the floor rolling around in hysterics. Inevitably, half an hour later, maybe a day later, there’s going to be something that you have to deal with and there’s no way you can run away from it.
“Talk about super parents. ... There’s so much respect for all you guys,” Harry said to the two parents on the call, who have a child or children with serious health conditions. A nurse and the head of the charity also participated.
Harry, who focused the Easter weekend call almost entirely on the others, said he was “not too bad” during the global mess.
“I think it’s certainly strange times — everyone is experiencing the same thing in a very unique way. But the longer this goes on for, I imagine the harder it is for each and every one of you.”
It’s all about morale, he said. His own father, Prince Charles, tested positive for the coronavirus last month.
“If morale is up, if you wake up in the morning and go, ‘Right, new day, got my whole family here, what are we going to do?’ Of course, there’s that fear of what might happen, but there’s so much that’s out of our control and all of the sudden we’ve realized how small we are in the grand scheme of things.”
Toward the end of the call, the seriously ill children and their siblings joined in on the chat.
“It’s not just the moms and dads who are super,” Harry told them. “You as kids, no matter what age you are, none of you should be in this situation ... but we are and you are doing everything you can to make it easier for your mom and dad to look after you, to your brother, your sister — full respect to every single one of you.
“Because this is hard on everyone, but it is especially hard on you.”