The Duchess of Cornwall donned a mask, gloves and face shield to help prepare and serve food at the Mill End Lunch Club in Rickmansworth earlier this week. This lunch club is a place for older people to relax, socialise and enjoy a meal. It is part of the Royal Voluntary Service, of which Camilla is the President.
The Duchess was invited to visit the lunch club by 86-year-old Doris Winfield during one of their “check in and chat” calls. Doris and The Duchess have been writing and calling each other during the Coronavirus lockdown. During their chat, Camilla said: “You said to me to pop in if I was ever passing, so I have!”
After their meeting, Winfield said: “Getting to meet The Duchess of Cornwall in person after our phone call earlier in the year was such a surreal experience and one of the best moments of my life. It felt like meeting an old friend! It’s easy to feel anxious at the moment, with the prospect of a long winter and possible isolation ahead, so meeting the Duchess was a welcome distraction.”
Another touching moment during her visit came when Camilla brought lunch to a visually impaired diner. Ninety-six year old Kay Francis did not realize she was being served by royalty and asked Camilla to cut up her food—the Duchess happily obliged.
Volunteers have been working on how to safely reopen the club in the midst of the pandemic. During her visit, the Duchess expressed her thanks and said: “You do the most wonderful job. I’m very, very proud to be part of the RVS.”
This visit helped launch Royal Voluntary Service’s “Hour of Need” campaign. This campaign asks the British public to volunteer for one hour a week to support the National Health Service and their community during the winter months. Their hope is for people to come together and help one another through the first COVID winter, just like they did at the beginning of the pandemic.