Meghan Markle isn’t just celebrating her 40th birthday privately this year. The Duchess of Sussex announced a new program, 40×40, on her and Prince Harry’s non-profit Archewell’s site geared around mentorship.
Actress Melissa McCarthy joined Meghan (along with a juggling Prince Harry, who made a surprise last-minute cameo) to announce the program in a video. The two-minute segment gives a rare look inside Meghan and Harry’s luxe Montecito home, along with the first glimpse of the Duchess since she welcomed her second child, daughter Lilibet Diana, on June 4. It also showcases Meghan’s sense of humor. You can watch the video here on Archewell’s site.
Meghan appears, all smiles and in chic monochrome white in the video:
Meghan shared a note on Archewell explaining why she wanted to create 40×40. She wrote:
In reflecting on my 40th birthday and the many things I am grateful for, I’m struck that time is among our greatest and most essential gifts: Time with our loved ones, time doing the things we love, time spent learning, laughing, growing, and the sacred time we have on this earth. Amongst the most valuable gifts of time is also time spent in service to others knowing that it can contribute to incredible change. To that last point, and with my 40th lap around the sun in mind, it made me wonder: what would happen if we all committed 40 minutes to helping someone else or to mentoring someone in need? And then what would happen if we asked our friends to do the same?
In the past two years, and in large part because of the COVID-19 pandemic, tens of millions of women around the world have left the workforce, including over two million women in the U.S. So many of these women are also shouldering the brunt of the crisis when it comes to unpaid labor, including schooling and caring for family members. And the latest research shows that fewer women than men will regain work as we recover from the pandemic.
I believe mentorship is one way to help women regain confidence and rebuild their economic strength, and for my birthday, I have asked 40 friends, activists, athletes, artists, and world leaders to help kickoff a global effort by contributing 40 minutes of mentorship to support women re-entering the workforce. With this time, I hope they each help someone advance a professional life on her own terms, and, I hope that they inspire countless others to give 40 minutes of their time as well.
If you are able, please join us and pledge 40 minutes today in service of others in the way that feels right to you. The time that you donate can contribute to a global wave of service and set in motion meaningful impact in our own communities, and across the world.
Archewell announced participants in the program include Adele, Amanda Gorman, Amanda Nguyen, Deepak Chopra, Dr. Ibram X. Kendi, Gloria Steinem, José Andrés, Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, and Stella McCartney. You can learn more about the initiative and how to participate on Archewell here.
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