On 18 July, celebrate a great humanitarian’s vision and experience a kind of joy that only comes from helping others.
“Sometimes it falls upon a generation to be great. You can be that great generation. Let your greatness blossom.”- Nelson Mandela
What Is Mandela Day?
On the late Nelson Mandela’s birthday, 18 July, people around the world are invited to participate in a day where they pay it forward and engage in acts of service and kindness for their community for 67 minutes.
Why 67 minutes? For 67 years of his life, Nelson Mandela dedicated his life to conflict resolution, improving race relations, promoting and protecting human rights, reconciliation, improving gender equality and granting rights to children and other vulnerable groups, fighting poverty and promoting social justice.
Now, we pay homage to his selfless efforts by dedicating one minute for every year Mandela spent in service of others.
Mandela Day Ideas: 10 Simple Yet Impactful Ways to Bring Joy to Others
This year, instead of just trying to pay it forward, why not focus on actively spreading joy in your community? Since Amajoya is all about sharing joy, we thought this would be the perfect occasion to share a few ideas that can make a real difference in our communities’ lives. If you do adopt any of these Mandela Day ideas, please share and tag Amajoya on social media – we’d love to be part of your 67 minutes.
1. Organise a Cleanup
Spend 67 minutes cleaning up an area of your community – whether it’s a littered park, a beach, or simply the streets around your home. It’s a great way to keep the whole family busy, since even young children will be able to help.
2. Plant a Tree
Plant a tree or build a community garden, either in your own area or bring joy to an underprivileged community by contacting organisations who work there and planting in that area.
3. Donate to Kids
Donate old clothes or toys to a charity shop or a children’s home. As the saying goes, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. It’s also a teaching opportunity for your children – what they consider old and boring might be wonderful to a child who has less. You can also donate your children’s old textbooks and round up pens, papers, pencils and other items that will be of use to keeping children in school and off the streets. Add the cherry on top by including a couple of packs of Amajoya candy – that will really make the children’s day!
4. Put Together Packages for Patients
These can go to under-resourced patients in government hospitals. You can donate care packages to psychiatric hospitals especially, where many patients do not have access to more than basic daily items. Think of food treats, reading materials like books and magazines and puzzle books, and any other items you think could be useful to a patient.
5. Collect and Donate Sanitary Products
This will help the needy and also help to keep girls in school. Did you know that periods – and not having access to sanitary products – are a major reason why girls drop out of education? Be the change and get involved in a project like The Pad Princess in Johannesburg, or speak directly to an under-resourced school in your community.
6. Donate Blood
Or at least register to do so. Anybody over the age of 16, who is HIV negative and in good health can donate blood, yet only one percent of South Africans are active blood donors. This Mandela Day, be the change and save lives by registering or donating blood. More info at sanbs.org.za.
7. Start a Mini Pay-it-forward Campaign
Next time you buy coffee, offer to cover the bill of the person behind you. Hopefully they’ll be inspired to do the same in future.
8. Host a Boardgames Session At an Old Age Home
It’ll be a special event for the elderly and a chance for your family to interact across generations. Why not bake our simple sticky toffee pudding and take it along as a treat?
9. Host a R5 Dinner
Walk in someone else’s shoes by hosting a dinner where the budget is R5 per person. This amount is what many South Africans live on day to day. Can you and your friends organise something like that? Donate the rest of the meal amount to an organisation, like Ladles of Love, that feeds the needy.
10. Give a Homeless Person a Night Off the Streets
Buy a bed for a homeless person so they can spend the night off the streets. Haven Night Shelter does amazing work in and around Cape Town and makes donations and volunteering very easy, but other organisations like this exist in other parts of the country too. Explore your area and help the homeless find dignity.
Enjoyed our Mandela Day ideas for sharing joy? Then you’ll also love our blog about finding more joy in your everyday life:
Join the Amajoya Community to Share More Joy
For more tips and insights, join the Amajoya community – we don’t spam; we simply bring the joy!