Sure, there’s a wedding to plan. But Meghan Markle is also in training for a whole new life.
And she’s doing it faster than any royal bride before her.
“Meghan has been regularly making private visits to organizations as she gets to know the U.K. charity sector,” a palace source tells PEOPLE in this week’s cover story.
“She’s on a very busy schedule behind the scenes,” says the source. “She has her wedding preparation and is meeting a number of people all the time — from Harry’s charities, staff at the household and the Royal Foundation.” (The foundation oversees the charity work done by William, Harry, Kate and now Meghan.)
Supported by new palace aide Amy Pickerill, Meghan has been touring the U.K. with Harry. “She’s got good causes in her heart too,” says one of his friends. “They had done similar things in their charity work, and he’s really interested in following her lead.”
For more on Meghan’s royal preparations, a guide to the palaces, wedding tiaras and her style evolution, pick up a copy of this week’s issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday.
Meghan, 36, and Prince Harry, 33, are set to wed at St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle on May 19. On Monday, she appeared alongside her most high-profile royal event yet — the Commonwealth Day service at Westminster Abbey. (Despite dating William for almost a decade, Kate Middleton never joined an event of that caliber until after her 2011 marriage to Prince William.)
“She wants to make a difference, and she will make a difference,” says Lorraine Heggessey, CEO of the Royal Foundation.