The Duchess of Sussex has been making low-key visits to a communal kitchen where women affected by the Grenfell Tower fire have been making food for their community - and helped ensure the scheme's financial survival.
At first, the women were only able to keep the doors to the kitchen open to the community for two days a week due to a lack of funding.
However, thanks to the duchess’ involvement over the past few months, they’ll now be able to keep the kitchen open seven days a week as they prepare to release a cookbook with a foreword written by Meghan herself.
Together: Our Community Cookbook contains an assortment of recipes, some of which are very personal to the women’s families.
The 50 recipes are inspired by dishes from across Europe, the Middle East, North Africa and the eastern Mediterranean.
In her foreword, Meghan explains how the Hubb Community Kitchen in west London has provided the community affected by the Grenfell Tower fire with a safe space where they can share their happiness and their grief.
“Melding cultural identities under a shared roof, it creates a space to feel a sense of normalcy,” she writes.
“In its simplest form, the universal need to connect, nurture, and commune through food, through crisis or joy - something we can all relate to.”
The money raised by the Together cookbook will be monitored by the Royal Foundation, of which the duchess is a patron alongside Prince Harry and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
It will then be distributed to the Hubb Community Kitchen and other related projects.
Meghan’s work with the Hubb Community Kitchen is her first solo project since becoming a member of the royal family.
Serena Williams, a close friend of the duchess, has praised the project with a poignant message on Twitter.
“I used to call you Meghan (and I still do) but dear Duchess of Sussex your first project ‘Together’ a cookbook bringing women of all cultures together,” she wrote.
“I could not be more excited about it and proud of you.
“It’s beautiful - diversity, inclusivity, coming together in grief or joy.”
Meghan has taken an interest in initiatives involving communities of women on multiple occasions in the past.
When the duchess married Prince Harry in May this year, one of the charities that the couple asked people to donate towards instead of sending gifts was the Myna Mahila Foundation, a charity that provides women in Mumbai’s urban slums with support and access to sanitary products.
Furthermore, in 2005 Meghan gave a powerful speech at the UN on International Women’s Day on gender equality.
A line from the speech is quoted on the duchess’ profile on the royal family’s official website, which reads: “I am proud to be a woman and a feminist.”
Together: Our Community Cookbook can be bought from Waterstones for £9.99.
Some of the recipes featured in the cookbook include coconut chicken curry, aubergine masala and caramelised plum upside-down cake.
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