Every year on 18 July, which is former President Nelson Mandela’s birthday, South Africa and the rest of the world join hands to celebrate International Mandela Day.
In honour of Madiba’s life and values, International Mandela Day was launched in 2009 and encourages people to do some good, no matter how big or small, for 67 minutes on 18 July.
This is in recognition of the 67 years of his life that he spent serving his community, country and the world in the struggle for peace and equality.
Due to the success of Mandela Day, the celebration of this great leader was extended to the entire month of July, which has become known as Mandela Month.
The Mandela Month message for 2013, like previous years, is centred on change with the call to Take Action; Inspire Change; Make Every Day a Mandela Day.
It urges people everywhere to play a role in making the world a better place, one step at a time, just like Madiba did.
67 minutes of service
How will you spend your 67 minutes of service this Mandela Day? There are many ways to get involved. Here are just a few suggestions:
- Create food parcels and give them to people in need, such as street children.
- Volunteer to do shopping for an elderly or disabled person.
- Volunteer at your local police station or faith-based organisation.
- Offer your help at a local children’s home or an old age home.
- Offer to look after the children of a single mother to give her a break or take the children on an outing.
- Mow someone’s lawn or help them to fix things around the garden or house.
- Read to someone who can’t read.
- Collect unused clothing and blankets from friends and donate them to homeless people.
- Collect old newspapers from a school, community centre or hospital and take them to a recycling centre.
- Visit someone in hospital.