South Africa is celebrating Nelson Mandela's 94th birthday today. Mandela Day, also known as Madiba Day, in honor of his Xhosa clan name, hopes to "inspire individuals to take action to help change the world for the better, and in doing so build a global movement for good. Ultimately it seeks to empower communities everywhere. 'Take Action; Inspire Change; Make Every Day a Mandela Day.'”
In recognition of the 67 years Nelson Mandela sacrificed to fight for freedom and equality, South Africans were called upon to take 67 minutes today to give back to the community. Our Johannesburg office decided to dedicate 67 minutes to a day care within the city that serves neighborhood children aged newborn to five years old who have experienced loss, abuse and poverty. Many of the children have been orphaned, abused or have parents struggling with unemployment.
In keeping with Interbrand's creative spirit, our objective was to creatively stimulate the children to inspire and draw out their own artistry. We assembled goody bags filled with books, crayons and clay to allow them to colour and create, finding artistic skills the children may not have had the opportunity to discover and experience before.
We all had an opportunity to interact with the children and take them through activities such as ball skills, puzzles, threading and allowing them to colour in pictures of ‘Madiba.’ Taking a lunch break together, we enjoyed soup and conversation. It was our pleasure to also contribute some much needed donations of cleaning materials and story books.
It was a truly eye opening experience visiting an area most of us have only heard about before today. Being able to give back and make a difference in the lives of children was very powerful for all of us. It can never be compared to the sacrifice Nelson Mandela made for our country, but we celebrate this day and acknowledge the things we can change and improve life for others.