Flickr. Nelson Mandela Statue - South African Embassy 34019, Ted Eytan. CC BY NC 2.0
Here at JustCall, we don’t just offer cheap calls to South Africa. We’re also proud to be spreading the word about Nelson Mandela Day, which takes place on 18th July 2015. Officially declared by the United Nations in 2010, Mandela Day celebrates the legacy of the former South African president, who spent his life fighting for justice and equality in his country and beyond.
Who was Nelson Mandela?
Born on 18th July 1918 in the village of Mvezo, Nelson Mandela was a South African politician who served as president of the country from 1994 to 1999. A social revolutionary who fought racial and social prejudice within South Africa, Mandela was arrested in 1962 and imprisoned for conspiring to overthrow the government.
Amid escalating social unrest, Mandela was released from prison on February 11th 1990, and set to work organising the country’s first multi-racial elections in 1994. Mandela himself won the election, and became the first black president of South Africa. Despite being proclaimed a terrorist by those who opposed him, Mandela gained international acclaim for his work in progressing social and racial justice within South Africa, and Nelson Mandela Day is dedicated to the idea that one individual has the power to change the world.
During his presidency, Mandela - who was also commonly known by his tribe name, Madiba - oversaw a dramatic increase in welfare spending and the introduction of free healthcare for children. He also brought greater parity to grants and government funding for communities, which had previously been set a varying levels according to race.
After leaving office, Nelson Mandela devoted a great deal of time to combating the HIV epidemic within Africa. Before retreating from the public eye in 2004 to spend more time with his family and to focus on his health.
Nelson Mandela died in 2013 at the age of 95, and his funeral was attended by representatives from over 90 foreign states.
How do I get involved with Mandela Day?
The campaign encourages people to honour the charitable and conscientious nature of Nelson Mandela in many ways. Campaigners commonly choose to volunteer for good causes, helping others in honour of the memory of Mandela, and celebrating the fact that it is possible to make a difference to the lives of those who are less fortunate than ourselves.
Often criticised, sometimes controversial, but always acting in the spirit of philanthropy and social equality, Nelson Mandela is remembered fondly around the world for his humanitarian efforts. This July 18th, join JustCall in honouring the legacy of Madiba by helping those in need.
For more information about Nelson Mandela, how you can get involved in helping others, and how to spread the word - visit the official Mandela Day site.