Mandela Day 2018
June 18 - July 18
Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela was born on 18 July 1918 in a small town in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. He joined the African National Congress (ANC) and the struggle for the liberation of his people in 1944. He quickly rose through the ranks of the ANC and was instrumental in the establishment of the ANC Youth League and Umkhonto weSizwe. While facing the death penalty during the Rivonia trial (accused of sabotage) his words to the court became immortalised.
“I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”
After serving 27 years of this sentence he was finally released from prison on 11 February 1990, nine days after the unbanning of the ANC. In 1993 he won the Nobel Peace Prize mostly for guiding a deeply divided country through a peaceful transition to democratic rule. It was a miracle that saved many lives and created a new nation.
On 27 April 1994, Nelson Mandela voted for the first time in his life and was inaugurated as South Africa’s first democratically elected President on 10 May 1994.
Nelson Mandela never wavered in his devotion to democracy, equality and learning. Despite terrible provocation, he never answered racism with racism. His life is an inspiration to all who are oppressed and deprived; and to all who are opposed to oppression and deprivation.
He died peacefully at his home in Johannesburg on 5 December 2013.
Every year on 18 July, the day of his birth, South Africans celebrate Mandela Day. The idea is to offer at least 67 minutes of service to your fellow citizens on this day. 67 is the number of years that Nelson Mandela offered in service of his country before he retired. South Africans embrace this day with great enthusiasm, as the man for whom it is named, embraced all of us.
In South Africa, there will never again be a Nelson Mandela. We pray that there will never again be a need for a man like him! However, let us treasure the gift he was and is to our country. This year Nelson Mandela would have been 100 years old and Mandela Day promises to be extra special. Africa Food for Thought will be offering some exciting activities to fill 67 minutes significantly for people.
There are two projects we want to propose to you. Please help us to celebrate this Mandela Day better than ever before.
Project 1 Winter Holiday Club
AFFT has been supporting the Holiday Clubs hosted at Velocity Community Church and surrounding areas for several years now. It is an exciting event that has been running for more than 18 years and fulfils a very important role in poor communities.
This year they will be hosting 450 children at two different sites. Please help us provide them with food as young leaders do their best to fill this winter holiday with fun, warmth and security. Every R67 you donate provides food for four children for the five days of the Holiday Club.
Project 2 Mandela Day in Slovoville
Slovoville is a very poor area in the west of Soweto. One of the places there that will overwhelm you there, we know as Slovoville Hostel. It is a very old building with many rooms, but not one without a leaking roof. The place reeks of desperation and has a dark, dank atmosphere.
Just across the road from this hostel, you will find Khanya Creche. It is a place filled with joy and laughter. It is owned by Noluthando Somtseawu, an amazing lady who seems to be helping everyone all the time.
This year on Mandela Day we want to support Noluthando in providing a hot meal to her whole community, including the residents of Slovoville Hostel. And if possible, something to take home.
- Volunteers on the day
- Volunteers to prepare large quantities of delicious soup beforehand
- Enough money to provide a hot meal and maybe a bag of maize to take home to as many people who show up.
Please contact Emmah Mutimutema, our Operations Manager, at the office (+27 11 472 5727) or on email (email@example.com) if you are interested in one or both these projects.