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Meghan Markle writes messages to sex workers on bananas

While visiting Bristol's One25 — a charity that provides support and resources for women who feel trapped in street sex work, addiction, homelessness and other issues — the Duchess of Sussex had the idea of sharing messages with the women. Instead of writing the notes on paper, she decided to write them on bananas.

While helping volunteers put together care packages with food, Meghan took inspiration from a school cafeteria worker in the U.S. who wrote motivational messages to children. 

"I saw this project this woman had started somewhere in the States on a school lunch program," Meghan told reporters. "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." 

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The Duke and Duchess of Sussex visit One25 in Bristol - a charity that helps women break free from street sex work, addiction and other life-controlling issues, through practical and emotional support. While helping volunteers pack food parcels for some of Bristol’s street sex-workers, The Duchess asked if she could write empowering messages on the bananas to the women - a simple gesture and a way to incorporate positivity and kindness for those needing a self esteem boost. HRH learned of this idea from an act of kindness by a school cafeteria worker in the US who wrote messages for children, and The Duchess wanted to do the same for others in need. The food parcels, and The Duchess’s messages, will be delivered directly to vulnerable women on the streets by One 25’s ‘Yellow Van’ - part of their outreach programme. #royalvisitbristol

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She grabbed a marker, and said, "I am in charge of the banana messaging," and began to write words of encouragement on the bananas. Some of the messages included, "You are special," "You are strong," "You are brave" and "You are loved." With each one, she drew a small heart. 

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex shares empowering messages to vulnerable women while making care packages with One25 in Bristol, UK.  Toby Melville / AFP/Getty Images

"That really touched me — and I'm not even a royalist," One25 CEO Anna Smith told reporters. "She had clearly listened and heard what we are all about — that we don't judge, we simply offer the service and unconditional love. She totally got it." 

The food will be delivered directly to women by One 25's "Yellow Van," which supports around 150 women living on Bristol's streets. The truck stocks food, blankets, first aid, safety alarms, condoms and a safe space to talk. The charity is hoping that the royal visit will help raise more awareness and funding to further help the women of Bristol. 

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