Honouring Nelson Mandela: Make Everyday a Mandela Day

I woke up last Thursday morning to the delightful sounds of rhythmic singing, drumming and dancing of South African children. On the radio, these children reminded me that it was Nelson Mandela’s 95th birthday.

Lorelle wrote a touching Nelson Mandela Tribute last month with a wealth of resources about this remarkable man, who from 1962 to 1990 was incarcerated. Nelson Mandela voted the first time in his life in 1994.

Do you know there’s an international day called Nelson Mandela International Day? I only heard about this special day last week. Nelson Mandela International Day (or shortened for Mandela Day) was established by the UN General Assembly in 2009, for freedom, justice and democracy. Mandela Day started on July 18, 2010, on Mandela’s 92nd birthday.

Nelson Mandela International Day

Nelson Mandela International Day

You’ll find a comprehensive list of 67 ways you could do to change the world on the Mandela Day website.

These include making a new friend from a different cultural background, reading to someone who can’t, fixing the potholes in your street, helping out at your local hospice, mentoring a school leaver, mowing someone’s lawn, learning the story of someone older than you, donating indigenous trees to beautify neighbourhoods in poorer areas.

Mandela Day: 67 ways to make the change

Mandela Day: 67 ways to change life

I’ve created a Word Cloud with this helpful list of 67 good deeds. The high frequency words are shown below:

Verbs: donate, organise, help, make, offer, think, fix, need, build, support, volunteer, visit.

Nouns and adjectives: home, people, community, local, old, friends, sports, children, shelter, area, story, new, different, street, school, educator, councillor, food, kids, time, skills, group, cause, litter.

What’s Mandela Day?

“The Mandela Day campaign message is simple: Mr Mandela gave 67 years of his life fighting for the rights of humanity. All we are asking is that everyone gives 67 minutes of their time, whether it’s supporting your chosen charity or serving your local community.”

“Mandela Day is a call to action for individuals – for people everywhere – to take responsibility for changing the world into a better place, one small step at a time, just as Mr Mandela did.”

Source: Mandela Day Website

There are many charitable events around the world. In the UK, Red Nose Day in March and Children in Need in November are two dominant events, heavily promoted through the media. Tens of millions of pounds are raised each year. These events are highly charged, filled with spectacular entertaining acts. On Red Nose Day, people ‘do something funny for money.’ Some schools would commonly have a ‘non-uniform’ day, so that kids could wear outrageous outfits to school for a fun day to raise money.

Most people would sit comfortably in front of the telly and enjoy a night of extravaganza when these events are broadcast. People are entertained by celebrities and moved to tears by images of starving children in Africa. Then, people would pick up the phone to give out their credit card details to donate. Or they press a button to donate online.

Kindness – do good physically

The approach of Nelson Mandela International Day is shockingly different. It doesn’t focus on money. It focuses on kindness. It doesn’t expect you to be an entertainer, a clown, or a fancy-dresser. You don’t have to perform extreme acts such as climbing Mount Kilimanjaro or shaving your head. It doesn’t even want your money.

Mandela Day wants us to physically do good things to a loved one, a stranger, or a community. It encourages us to make a difference simply through our everyday life, such as: bake something for a support group of your choice, donate a wheelchair or guide dog to someone in need, mentor a school leaver or student in your field of expertise, and take an elderly person grocery shopping as they will appreciate your company and assistance.

The aim is to build a global movement for good. Everyone can be a change-maker and make everyday a Mandela Day.

Blog Exercise: Honour the past

Lorelle has a blog exercise, Honour the Past with Anniversaries and Birthdays. Lorelle celebrates the birthday of WordPress founder, Matt Mullenweg, in January. She also celebrated the 10th Birthday of WordPress on May 27 this year.

Mr. Mandela is a great man, who teaches us about unity, fairness, and courage. He is revered around the world regardless of religion or race. The whole world celebrated the birthday of this great man, who has inspired us to support, help, serve, nurture, and change someone’s life, one small step at a time, and to be totally altruistic, to make this world a better place.

You can find more Blog Exercises on . This is a year-long challenge to help you flex your blogging muscles.

My Related Posts:

Inspired. Entertained. Treated. Sponsoring.
Sweet Gangnam Style by Greater Manchester Police
Who is FANG Zhouzi? Meet The John Maddox Prize winner
Why ‘Opium Den’ is an offensive name
Weekly Photo Challenge – Purple with Traidcraft
Closeness: showing you care with cakes
Traidcraft inspiration
The day we battled strong wind
Blogger Power

8 thoughts on “Honouring Nelson Mandela: Make Everyday a Mandela Day

  1. Lorelle VanFossen

    Love the wordle – word cloud. Brilliant graphic choice.

    Such a shame that it takes one person to remind us to be kind to each other and take the steps to make a difference in the world around us. You would think this kind of thinking would be ingrained within all of us from birth. That’s the place I want to live in.

    Until then, we are blessed with people like you and Mandela to remind us to be kind. Thanks for the reminder.

    1. Janet Williams

      Me and Mandela? What an association that I hardly deserve! The inspiration of this post comes directly from you.

      By the way, the Word Cloud was created with Tagxedo — it allows me to turn words into different shapes, while Wordle only deals with words, not image. Tagxedo also deals with oriental languages well with certain fonts.

      It’s remarkable that we have this man who is loved and cherished by people across the world. In the history, not many people can achieve this status.

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