Meghan Markle has 40-minute call with Althea Bernstein, the victim of an alleged hate crime

Marissa DeSantis
Getty Images/Courtesy

Meghan Markle has offered her support to 18-year-old Althea Bernstein, who was the victim of an alleged hate crime last week.

Bernstein, who is biracial, is a college student and volunteer EMT. On June 24, Bernstein called 911 to report that four white men had sprayed what is believed to be lighter fluid on her while she was stopped at a red light before throwing a flaming lighter at her.

The incident, which is being investigated as a hate crime, took place in Madison, Wisconsin.

(Getty Images)

As the news made headlines, it caught Meghan's attention. She reached out to Michael Johnson, the president of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Dane County, who has been acting as Bernstein’s spokesperson following the incident. Over the weekend, he told the Channel 3000 news station that Meghan asked him to connect her with Bernstein.

According to Johnson, Meghan and Bernstein spoke over the phone on Saturday afternoon for about 40 minutes, with Harry even popping on to briefly join them.

“Her and Meghan talked about the importance of self-care and allowing herself to heal,” Johnson told the news station of Bernstein’s conversation with Meghan.

Althea Bernstein's face after being set on fire (AP)

“She applauded her for the way that she responded and pretty much said ‘Hey Michael, give me her cellphone number. I want to stay in touch. And let me know when you want me to come back and talk to people in Wisconsin,’” he added, sharing that Meghan has committed to participating in a future virtual town hall to speak with other young people in Wisconsin.

Johnson, who shared that Bernstein is “struggling” following the incident, said that Meghan’s call moved Bernstein to tears and “lifted her spirits.”

Johnson added that Meghan advised Bernstein to stay away from social media in an effort to avoid reading any negative comments and said the two women connected about faith and being biracial.

Meghan gives virtual address to graduating students of Immaculate Heart High School in LA

Despite moving to Los Angeles at the start of the pandemic, Harry and Meghan have already managed to get involved with the community (following social-distancing rules, of course).

In April, Meghan and Harry were photographed in their face masks as they delivered meals to those in need in West Hollywood through LA-based charity, Project Angel Food. In early June, Meghan delivered a virtual speech to the graduating students of her alma mater, Immaculate Heart High School, where she spoke about racism amid the Black Lives Matter movement taking place in the US and around the world.

Even more recently, Meghan and Harry joined members of Homeboy Industries in LA to help cook meals for the organization’s Feed Hope program, providing food for those in need.