Origins of the day
Nelson Mandela International Day is an annual international day of honour of Nelson Mandela. It takes place each year on his birthday 18 July. It was an initiative spearheaded by the 46664 concerts to get the global community to partake what Nelson Mandela stood for as well as to immortalize his name. It began in 2009 when Tata turned 91yrs.
The whole idea behind the tradition is that each individual has the power to transform the world and make an impact, to make the world a better change. It celebrates everything Nelson Mandela stood for:
- Compassion (Ubuntu)
- Tolerance of differences
- Faith in humanity
- Embracing the rainbow nation
What giving and sharing teaches us?
- When we give others less fortunate than us, we become aware of our different realties. We become grateful and appreciate what we have. This way, we do not take anything for granted.
- When different people, from different backgrounds come together, there is a sense of belonging, which further unifies us.
- We embrace and accommodate each other regardless of our differences whether racial or tribal.
- It feels good to lighten another’s burden.
- Sharing and giving also instils in us a sense of abundance, the realization that there is enough to go around.
- We become responsive of other people’s problems and to readily assist whenever someone is in pain or lacking. Ubuntu means your pain is my pain, your joy is my joy.
- We learn that one doesn’t have to be rich to give. When we give from whatever little we have, we learn that we can make a huge impact in the lives of other people.
- It is in giving, that we truly receive. When we give to others, we add to our own bank in the universe and our blessings start to flow.
- When we come together to help others, we recognise our different good qualities and strengths. We all have something to bring to the table and that is the beauty of the Rainbow Nation.
- Mandela Day is just one of our many national treasured traditions that can be passed down from one generation to the other.
What can one do on Mandela Day?
- Donate blood
- Teach someone a new skill
- Donate clothes or blankets to a Charity for the homeless
- Volunteer your time at a shelter, soup kitchen or the SPCA
- Wipe out graffiti
- Mow the lawn at an old age home
- Donate books to a Library near you
- Make a care package for someone in need e.g. cosmetics, sanitary towels and stationery
- Do a neighbourhood clean up
- Make dinner for someone who is ill or aged
Make everyday a Mandela day and have fun while doing so!