Happy Birthday Nelson Mandela!

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Our former South African president Nelson Mandela turns 92 today, just one week after the successful hosting of the FIFA Soccer World Cup.

But this year the world will celebrate with him on

Nelson Mandela International Day”,

which the United Nations decided would be observed every year on his birthday to recognise his struggle for peace and freedom.

In honour of his 67 years of service  to his country and his people, the Mandela Foundation is asking people around the world to give 67 minutes of their time to volunteer work – one minute for every year that he spent in the struggle for equality.

What can we do?

  • Donate blood (only if you’re over 18).  Monday is World Blood Donar Day.
  • Volunteer at rural schools; give books, stationary, posters, paint out the classrooms, donate tea and coffee for the staff, garden or decorate at the entrance.
  • Fix and build playground equipment in poor community schools and parks.
  • Make meals for the needy.
  • Donate groceries to the needy.
  • Visit the needy at caravan parks and give clothes and food.
  • Visit hospital wards; especially the children’s wards, oncology wards and bless the nurses too.
  • Visit the aged in old age homes.  Encourage the staff who serve the elderly.
  • Visit and encourage staff and children in orphanages.
  • Join with other communities and play soccer/games in a community park.
  • Offer your services to your local municipal library or clinics.
  • Plant a vegetable bed in a needy community; donate seeds, seedlings, garden tools and fertilizer.
  • Visit the lonely in your own neighbourhood.
  • Bake cakes and biscuits to give to the needy.
  • Serve those who serve – the cleaners, refuse removal staff.
  • Thank your local police and emergency workers.  Bring them cake!

Watch this short video of Nelson Mandela International Day.

Read his autobiography The Long Road To Freedom.

A Long Walk to Freedom

For an excellent, rich,  literature-based South African History eduction curriculum I highly recommend Footprints On Our Land.  (We used this curriculum for all 3 of our children. See my review here.)

As Nelson Mandela encourages,

we must use our lives to make the world a better place.

What will you do?

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7 thoughts on “Happy Birthday Nelson Mandela!

  1. Hi Nadene

    Thank you for this inspiring post. Today we went down the road to the homeless who hang around the shops near us and we took them soup and rolls. I am just so aware today of everything we have and how little they have. The children were quite nervous about reaching out like this but the moment the first person said thank you they relaxed and were enthused to do more.

    • How wonderful ~ for you and your children … and for the people whose lives you touched today! I’m so moved and touched. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Hello! I have read your blog for quite some time now and have really enjoyed it! I just wanted to thank you for posting this! I live in the United States and had not heard about Nelson Mandela International Day. My husband and I are now thinking about what we can do to celebrate the day. We greatly respect Nelson Mandela and all he has done for South Africa. Thanks again for the post and the great ideas! :)

  3. Thanks for sharing this great list of things we can do. We’d like to add more volunteering into our lives as a family, and you’ve given us lots of ways to start.

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