Meghan Markle compared with Princess Diana by Tom Bower
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Meghan Markle’s attempts to “elevate certain causes” through her new organisation Archewell have been compared to her late mother-in-law, Princess Diana. Both during and after her marriage to Prince Charles, the Princess of Wales used her position to draw attention to charities across the world, and sought to portray “positive images” of her humanitarian work. Since leaving the Royal Family in 2020, Meghan Markle has gone on to launch a number of projects and charities through the non-profit foundation that she shares with Prince Harry.
When asked if Meghan was trying to follow in Diana’s footsteps, royal commentator Jonathan Sacerdoti told Us Weekly: “I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad thing if that’s what she’s doing, because there were things about Diana which many people saw as very positive within the Royal Family.
“Then, as she left the Royal Family after this messy divorce, she really tried to use her position and her fame to promote not only herself, but her causes and charities around the world.
“There are those famous images of her with the HIV patients or walking through a landmine area for the landmine charity.
“These are really positive things she was trying to do, positive images, so I think if Meghan does want to emulate that, it’s quite understandable.
He continued: “I think that she is showing herself as somebody who, at least in her head, is pursuing worthy goals around the world and trying to elevate certain causes to a level where we’re all aware of them just as Diana did.
“She’s getting the same criticism Diana did from some quarters for doing that, because there are people who say that both of them might have also been thinking about their own image a bit more than the causes they were claiming to represent.”
During her life, Princess Diana became known for reshaping the mould of a royal public figure, with her friendly approach to the public and her physical affection towards the patients and victims she visited.
She made headlines in 1989, when she hugged a seven-year-old AIDS patient at Harlem Hospital Centre in New York.
From that point onwards, she made a point of physically touching victims of AIDS/HIV, saying: “HIV does not make people dangerous to know. You can shake their hands and give them a hug. Heaven knows they need it.”
She had a similar approach to victims of leprosy, and visited hospitals in Indonesia, Nepal, India and Zimbabwe to raise awareness for the disease.
In the years leading to her death, Princess Diana worked closely with victims of landmines, and was the patron of the HALO Trust, an organisation that removed debris and landmines that had been left behind by war.
As a Patron to over 100 charities, she also worked with cancer patients, homeless people and animal protection.
Her sudden death at the age of 36 in 1997 caused widespread mourning across the globe.
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Since leaving the Royal Family in 2020, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have relocated to California, where they have established their own non-profit organisation, Archewell.
They have also signed a multi-million-pound deal with streaming giants Netflix and Spotify, to produce a range of “informative” and “uplifting” content.
As a previous advocate for female empowerment, Meghan’s projects so far have reflected her commitment to social justice and gender equality.
With Prince Harry, she has donated to the Genesis Women’s Shelter in Dallas and recently, has partnered with the organisation Women For Afghan Women, to help aid women and children in the evacuation during the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan.
For her 40th birthday on August 4, she announced her 40×40 initiative, which was aimed at helping unemployed women remobilise for the workforce.
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