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Make a difference to the life of others this Nelson Mandela Day

July 18, 2019 Destination Africa / Seychelles No Comments Email Email

This year marks the 10th anniversary of Mandela Day – an internationally recognised day in honour of Nelson Mandela and celebrated each year on his birthday on the 18th July. The day is a celebration of his life work fighting for equality as well as a global call to action to make every day Mandela Day.

On this day the call to action is for us all to give 67 minutes – 1 minute for every year he spent to the service of democracy and fighting social injustice – to make a difference and inspire change in our communities.

Over the past 10 years Mandela Day initiatives have touched many lives – helping to build schools, homes, and feeding and clothing those most in need. In the words of Mandela himself: “It is in your hands to make our world a better one for all,” he said.

This year also marks 25 years since the first post-apartheid elections were held and the end of over 300 years of colonisation, segregation and minority rule, of which Mandela was so instrumental in fighting against.

South African Tourism’s Hub Head for Australasia, Mosilo Sofonia, said: “Nelson Mandela Day is of huge importance to the people of South Africa as it marks the birth of a man who made it his life mission to build a better country for its people. Today we celebrate his life and honour his legacy of making the world a better place by taking time out of our day to give back to humanitarian causes.”

“It is also a day to reflect on his life and leadership and we encourage everyone to find out more about his journey – from his childhood home to Robben Island, where he served 18 of his 27-year prison sentence,” added Sofonia.

South African Tourism shares its recommendations for following the journey and life story of one of history’s most inspiring change-makers:

  • Nelson Mandela Museum, Mthatha – This is a unique museum as it spans across three sites, where Mandela was born (Myezo), where he spent his childhood (Qunu), and Mthatha, which holds exhibitions of his journey.
  • Mandela House, Soweto – This home in Johannesburg is where a young Nelson Mandela and his family lived. It’s now no longer a home but a museum with mementos from his life.
  • Nelson Mandela Capture Site, Near Howick – Nelson Mandela was captured in Northwest of Durban. A sculpture was built here as tribute, transforming a low point in his life into a positive memorial to honour his struggles.
  • Robben Island Museum, Off Cape Town – This World Heritage Site located in Cape Town, is the former prison where Nelson Mandela spent 18 years incarcerated and shows the reality of what Nelson Mandela endured behind bars.
  • Long Walk to Freedom Statue, Paarl – This significant statue symbolises the final stage of Mandela’s imprisonment. He was released on 11 February 1990 and it was here that he walked out with his fist in the air and a smile on his face. The statue in Paarl now immortalises that moment in front of the gates.
  • Nelson Mandela Statue, Pretoria – In the administrative capital city of South Africa, stands a nine-metre-tall statue of South Africa’s first black president. This was formerly the epicentre of apartheid that now signifies Mandela’s values of unity, reconciliation, compassion and Ubuntu. Ubuntu is a South African term often translated to “I am because we are” and includes the essential human virtues; compassion and humanity.

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