Meghan Markle and Prince Harry just delivered a very personal and positive message to sex workers.
Photo by Toby Melville/Getty Images

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry stopped by the charity One25 unannounced in Bristol where Markle and Prince Harry got to work helping pack lunches meant to be distributed to sex workers.

As part of its larger set of initiatives, One25 provides 150 sex workers with food bags on a nightly basis.

Markle Spontaneously asked for a magic marker and began to scrawl inspirational messages on the bananas. "Do you have a sharpie?" Markle says in a video of the day. "I have an idea."


“I’m in charge of the banana messaging,” Markle can be heard saying in a videoTweeted out by Kensington Palace, as she wrote supportive words such as "You are strong,""You are brave," "You are special," and "You are loved” over the fruit.

In a brilliant and heart warming move, Markle took inspiration from an American school lunch program.

According to DailyMail’s Rebecca English, Markle said, "I saw this project this woman had started somewhere in the States on a school lunch program. 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.”

One25 helps women “break free from street sex work, addiction, and other life-controlling issues and build new, independent lives."

“Our approach to giving unconditional love and support is what builds trust — and how that works and helps them move on,” Smith told People. “At the bottom of all this is self-esteem and self-worth for the women who may have come from a background of being sexually abused or a life in care and where their families don’t support them in the way they should.”

Smith said of Markle’s gesture:  “To be told by someone in the public eye that they are worth it and that they value what they’ve said and done is a massive part of that process,” said Smith.

Although the messages weren’t directed towards the volunteers at One25, the volunteers were still touched by Markle’s words. "It sounds really cheesy, but little things like that when you are out, especially tonight, just to get that little thing that Meghan took her time out to write that one, it's lush,” one of the volunteers told Hello.

Markle’s supportive words got a ton of support on Twitter as well.

Simon & Garfunkel's song "Bridge Over Troubled Water" has been covered by more than 50 different musical artists, from Aretha Franklin to Elvis Presley to Willie Nelson. It's a timeless classic that taps into the universal struggle of feeling down and the comfort of having someone to lift us up. It's beloved for its soothing melody and cathartic lyrics, and after a year of pandemic challenges, it's perhaps more poignant now than ever.

A few years a go, American singer-songwriter Yebba Smith shared a solo a capella version of a part of "Bridge Over Troubled Water," in which she just casually sits and sings it on a bed. It's an impressive rendition on its own, highlighting Yebba's soulful, effortless voice.

But British singer Jacob Collier recently added his own layered harmony tracks to it, taking the performance to a whole other level.

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Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
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Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

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