Celebrate Nelson Mandela International Day With Your Family

Education theme

Started in 2009, Nelson Mandela International Day brings the message that every person can (and has the responsibility to) change the world for the better. Celebrating Mandela’s legacy, this holiday honors the idea of serving every day. Celebrating Mandela Day means taking action. This can fall under a number of different categories – including, food security, education and literacy, shelter and infrastructure and the environment.

Whether you’re young or old, you (and your family) can mark this day with your own celebration. How?

Pick a theme.

What’s important to you? What about your family? Choose from the four main themes (food security, education and literacy, shelter and infrastructure and the environment). If you’re helping your children to celebrate this day, you may need to do some research here. Younger children probably won’t come to the day understanding what these theme areas are. Go online, take a trip to the library or visit community members who already work in public service to learn more about the themes.

Do some research.

Not only can you research the Day’s themes, but your kids can learn more about the man himself. Read biographies, and then create a timeline of his life. Your child can write about the research or (if he’s younger, and can’t write yet) draw pictures of Mandela.

Commit to the community.

Pick an organization to help – or, start your own. Have your family commit to community service on this day, and keep it going for many more. Think of Nelson Mandela International Day as the first day in your family’s community service life!




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