meghan markle seen in Canada
Photograph courtesy of Facebook/Downtown Eatside Women's Centre

Meghan Markle Visited a Women’s Shelter in Vancouver

The Duchess is wasting no time in getting to know the community.

After a tumultuous week, Meghan Markle made her first outing in Canada yesterday.

The Duchess has been living in Canada with son Archie since last week’s announcement that she and husband Prince Harry are taking a step back from their senior royal roles in search of a more “progressive role within the institution.” What that role looks like is still being determined, however the Queen confirmed the pair will spend time in Canada moving forward. Now, Meghan has been seen in Vancouver for the first time since the news broke.

Yesterday, Markle was spotted boarding a seaplane on Victoria Island to take her to Vancouver. Wearing her old favourite Barbour jacket and Cuyana tote, the Duchess of Sussex looked relaxed after what has no doubt been an exhausting week. Markle made the outing to visit the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre, it was revealed in a Facebook post by the centre.

The centre’s acting Director, Kate Gibson, received an email from Meghan’s personal assistant on Monday saying that the Duchess was interested in visiting some of the city’s organizations working to help women. Upon her arrival at the centre, Gibson said Meghan was “ just casual and lovely,” according to CBC News. “She just wants to get to know the community. We know she’s going to come to Canada and I think possibly the West Coast. I think that she just doesn’t want to be sort of a stranger in the midst. She just wants to get to know people.”

According to the centre’s website, it provides basic necessities, hot meals and support to more than 500 women and children each day. During her time at the shelter, Gibson said Markle asked about the work being done there and what more could be done to make the area safer for women overall. She listened to stories from workers at the shelter, too. “I thought she was really down to earth,” Gibson said of the Duchess. “She’s very good at sort of picking up something from the conversation and expanding that a bit, and asking questions and [was] empathetic. She was really great.”

Even before her life as a royal, Meghan was passionate about helping those less fortunate than her, and during her time in Toronto visited shelters at various locations around the city.

Given this latest outing, it looks likely that the pair will base themselves in Vancouver and that we’ll be seeing plenty more visits like this from both the Duke and Duchess moving forward.