Mandela Day is a global event which takes place on Mandela’s birthday every year; the 18th of July. It celebrates and honours the legacy of South Africa’s late president Nelson Mandela who was committed to the betterment of the lives of others.
Madiba fought for justice for 67 years of his life. Now the call to action of Mandela Day is to honour Madiba’s legacy by spending 67 minutes of your own life by doing something to promote peace, reconciliation and to fight poverty. Could you think of a better example of kindness, humility and generosity? We have been fortunate enough to witness the life and example of an incredible leader! There are so many ways to get involved on a large or a small scale! If you’re interested in getting involved on Mandela Day have a look at some of our suggestions.
1. Feed the Hungry in the Community
In a society which still bears the scars of the past, it is not difficult to see those in need on a daily basis. This Mandela Day, why not round up a group of your friends and put together food packages? A few loaves of bread, some milk and a few cans of non-perishables can go a long way to those in need! Once you and your friends have put together a few food packages, take a drive through your local community and hand them out to people in need. A bit of planning and a drive around can make a huge difference in your community!
2. Spend time with the Elderly
In this case, I’m not only talking about your own nana or gogo (even though they deserve all the love and care in the world). For Mandela Day this year, consider spending an hour in an old age home, visiting those that we sometimes tend to forget and having a conversation with the older folks in the community. Another option could be to take an elderly neighbour of yours and do their shopping or chores in town. Taking the time to really listen or support someone is about way more than just filling your 67 minutes quota.
3. Spend time with the Young People
How about offering to spend 67 minutes in one of your local schools or orphanages, playing with the children or reading to them? You could even offer to provide extra classes or tutor some of the children struggling with a subject you excel in! Most schools are happy to accommodate students who are willing to provide help and service in whatever manner possible! Lend a hand to our overworked teachers and see where you can provide support!
4. Get your Hands Dirty
Take a look around your community. Are there any places where you could provide service in the form of building or painting? Local non-profit organizations are often in need of volunteers to help with painting, moving, cleaning and building. There is nothing more satisfying than seeing a project come together, whether it be adding a new lick of paint to a room desperately needing paint, or sanding down desks in a school which cannot afford new desks. You don’t need to be an engineer, just grab a paintbrush or tear off a piece of sand paper and get your hands dirty!
5. Get your Community Clean
Why not round up a few of your friends and spend an hour cleaning up your local community by picking up litter and rubbish? It may seem like a small act, but spending an hour doing something for your community will make a difference – no matter how small!
I know you’re probably thinking that Mandela Day is only one day and doing your part for Mandela Day may only take 67 minutes out of your day, what difference will that really make in the greater scheme of things? Well the real message behind Mandela Day is to “Make Every Day a Mandela Day”. Taking 67 minutes out of your day goes to show how little time it takes to really make a difference. Madiba’s call is to challenge you to start with 67 minutes and go from there!
If you’re still looking for more ways to get involved check out the official Mandela Day Website!
“It is better to lead from behind and to put others in front, especially when you celebrate victory when nice things occur. You take the front line when there is danger. Then people will appreciate your leadership.”
– Nelson Mandela