It’s that time of the year when we lovingly pay tribute to Nelson Mandela: his struggle, passion and dedication in the fight for freedom and a democratic SA. This year, more than ever, we need to live his legacy by giving back to charities and people in need. Of course, with the extended lockdown, and the continued unrest, we can take a virtual tour or visit the various Nelson Mandela heritage sites.
I know most of us have had this thought and most of us wouldn’t say it out aloud – We’re so tired of this pandemic. With each wave it hits closer and closer to me, more and more people I know closely are dying and it just becomes more frightening. Every day that my family and I remain unscathed by the virus feels like a huge relief. And every time I can order online or safely work from home, still earning an income, I’m struck by how blessed I am. First world problems as they say.
Unfortunately, living in a country where more than half its population lives below the poverty line means that most people are not so blessed. At least 25% are experiencing food poverty. Looking at social media and even just my neighbourhood WhatsApp group shows how so many people are coming together to help those in need. Soup kitchens, food drives, groups of people caring for covid patients monitoring them daily, gofundme initiatives for waiters and every other kind of help is being offered. In that way I think South Africans are empathetic and big-hearted.
The concern is that all noble efforts are not enough. Many people are still struggling, small businesses are closing and many more people are unemployed due to the pandemic.
Celebrate Mandela Day
Mandela Day is a day to honour the legacy of Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s former President, and his values, through volunteering and community service. (Wikipedia) Every July 18th is an opportunity for people to be even more of service to disadvantaged communities. This year more than ever, it seems like we all need to do more. Non-profit organisations have most certainly felt the effects of Covid.
Knowing what to do and where to help can be daunting. Being afraid of catching the virus also limits the capacity to be more hands on. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of charities that need your help. They have wish lists which makes it easy to identify what’s most needed. Online donations are most welcomed and volunteers can choose how to spend their time. In this way, perhaps we can give respite to one of these organisations, even if just for a short while.
“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived; it is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” Nelson Mandela
Click here to find a list of charities for:
Various other initiatives you can contribute to:
- Bet On Better 67 000 cans initiative
- Flying Children wish list
- Ipeleng Cares Foundation toiletry drive
- The Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre wish list
- The Teddy Bear Clinic transport a child initiative
- more initiatives
There’s something about Nelson that has captured the hearts of not only South Africans, but globally too. His name is known to many. It goes beyond his struggle: Nelson Mandela’s personality, wisdom, loyalty, determination, firmness and articulate fight for freedom has left its mark worldwide.
These educational sites are open under strict Covid protocol during Lockdown Level 4. It is a great time to introduce your kids to the legend himself, in a fun and photographic way: