We can change the world and make it a better place. It is in your hands to make a difference.
– Nelson Mandela
Mandela Day is a global call to action for citizens of the world to take up the challenge and follow in the formidable footsteps of Madiba, a man who transformed his life, served his country and freed his people. Its objective is to inspire individuals to take action to help change the world for the better and in so doing, build a global movement for good. When Nelson Mandela was alive, he followed three rules throughout his life, which he did at great personal sacrifice: Free yourself, Free others and Serve every day. Thus, this day called for a sober reflection on what he stands for.
The focus of this year celebration is literacy; shelter; and food security. More so, this year’s event marks 20 years since Mandela became president of South Africa, ending three centuries of white rule. Food security, education and literacy, shelter are global concerns thus, the celebration calls on World Leaders to implement policies to address these problems. To celebrate the day, the Nelson Mandela Foundation calls on people around the world to devote 67 minutes of their time – one minute for every year of Mr. Mandela’s public service – to make small gesture of solidarity with humanity and a step towards a global movement.
In his message, Ban Ki-moon, secretary-general of the United Nations, said: “Last year, the world lost one of its greatest leaders when Nelson Mandela passed away. We remember his legacy especially on his birthday, the 18th of July. “Apartheid is gone – thanks to Nelson Mandela, countless other individuals and the proud actions of the United Nations. But our planet and its people still face terrible threats – poverty, discrimination, climate change, conflict and more. Nelson Mandela Day is a call to action. Each of us can celebrate this day by helping to address real problems in our communities. Together we can give great meaning to our celebration by paving the way for a better future.”