Meghan Markle wraps up warm in a coat and turtle neck as she and Prince Harry visit a café in New Zealand that’s putting on a pregnancy-friendly menu for the mum-to-be
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have met with young mental health advocates at a New Zealand cafe
Royal couple spent 30 minutes hearing how mental health projects are making a difference in the country
Meghan and Harry will later visit the wilderness reserve Abel Tasman National Park to take part in a hike
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have met with young mental health advocates working to make a difference in New Zealand.
Harry and Meghan arrived at a cafe in Wellington, the country’s capital, for the meeting on Monday morning.
Meghan stepped-out for the engagement wearing a dark coat, black turtle neck and black pants, with the Maranui Cafe putting on a pregnancy-friendly menu for the mother-to-be.
Hundreds of adoring fans holding signs and flags had lined the streets surrounding the cafe in Lyall Bay to catch a glimpse of the Duke and Duchess.
The crowd cheered as the royals stepped out from their vehicle holding hands, before they headed inside the cafe at the Maranui Surf Life Saving Club.
Harry – who is the Commonwealth youth ambassador – and Meghan spent about 30 minutes hearing about mental health projects operating in the country and the positive contribution they are having on young people in New Zealand.
During the warm and free-flowing conversation, the Duke raised the need to normalise conversations around mental health and also spoke about his concerns the effect social media was having on young people.
Meghan wore a ‘1737’ lapel badge, which promoted a local helpline. ‘Everyone needs someone to turn to, right?’ the Duke said, while the Duchess added ‘You’re all doing really excellent work’.
Co-founder of mental health charity Voices of Hope, Genevieve Mora, who was at the meeting, told stuff the Duke and Duchess are ‘both really nice people, and they seem really happy’.
‘[Harry] was very interested, they both asked a lot of questions. I talked about my own personal experience, about feeling a lot of shame, and he was really interested to understand why I felt so ashamed about it.’
School students later took to the streets to sing a Maori song as they waited for the royal motorcade to leave the cafe, with the Duke and Duchess taking time out of their busy schedule to chat to those who were waiting, including five-year-old Joe Young who had become emotional and was seen wiping away tears.
The cafe’s owner Bronwyn Kelly told Newstalk ZB just prior to the arrival of the royals how staff were excited for the visit, which had come as a pleasant surprise.
‘We didn’t believe it, we thought it was a fairy tale, for us it was completely out of the blue,’ she said.
‘Staff from the royal palace when they were doing the pre-planning came to Maranui, they really loved the vibe, the atmosphere and I think that it’s because it’s right beside the beach, it really offered something… that coastal but unique sort of feeling.’
The menu featured items which were carefully planned by Ms Kelly’s business partner and chef, taking into account Meghan was pregnant.
‘She’s been thinking about what to offer, especially with Meghan being pregnant. As it’s just a morning tea it does make it quite simple so we’re just going to offer some really delicious yummy little baking treats, which will offer some good local New Zealand products,’ Ms Kelly had said before the visit.
Leftovers from the morning tea were not put to waste – they were given to the young children who were waiting outside the cafe.
From the cafe, the couple boarded a helicopter bound for Abel Tasman National Park on New Zealand’s South Island, where they are expected to take part in an hour long hike and talk to conservation staff.
Following the visit to the wilderness reserve, they will attend a beach barbecue and tree planting with local students.
It is the only time the couple will visit the South Island while in New Zealand.
Later, Their Royal Highnesses will visit Wellington’s Courtenay Creative for an event celebrating the city’s thriving creative arts scene.
The couple arrived in New Zealand on Sunday – the latest country on their whirlwind 16-day tour royal tour.
On Tuesday, Their Royal Highnesses will travel to Auckland, where they will firstly visit the North Shore to dedicate a 20 hectare area of native bush to The Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy.
They will then join the Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to visit Pillars, a charity operating across New Zealand.
Later that afternoon, The Duke and Duchess will have the opportunity to meet the people of Auckland on the Viaduct Harbour, before attending a reception hosted by the Prime Minister at the Auckland War Memorial Museum.
The final day of their Royal Highnesses’ tour will take place in Rotorua.
The Duke and Duchess will head to Rainbow Springs to learn more about the centre’s kiwi breeding programme.
Later that afternoon, Meghan and Harry will head into the city for the chance to meet members of the public gathered there.
The royal couple then heads back to London.
Source: DAILYMAIL MAILONLINE