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Find the Madiba in you | Nelson Mandela Centenary Celebrations

In the words of Revolutionary, Public Servant, Political Leader, Philanthropist and Father of our Nation, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela: “There can be no greater gift than that of giving one’s time and energy to help others without expecting anything in return.”

Mandela Day was officially declared an annual international day in honour of Mr. Mandela, by the United Nations in November 2009, with the first Mandela Day held on the 18th of July 2010.

A global call to action that mobilizes the masses and celebrates the concept that each individual has within them the power to change the world by making an impact, no matter how big or small. This is an especially significant year as Nelson Mandela would have celebrated his centenary year. At Sandton City and Nelson Mandela Square, where a six metre tall bronze sculpture of Madiba watches over us, we are bringing the people of South Africa together in an attempt to fight poverty and promote peace, reconciliation and cultural diversity with our Mandela Day Centenary Celebrations for 2018.

Taking action and inspiring change, on Mandela Day, the 18th of July 2018, the celebration of Mandela’s legacy will kick off with performances by Buskaid, a charitable trust helping young disadvantaged Musicians in South African townships, from 11am to 12:30pm. Started by British Viola Player Rosemary Naiden, the Organisation has been affording opportunities to young impoverished string players for twenty-one years. These performances will be followed by the African Carnival from 12:30 to 1:30pm, performed by The Carnival Company, specialising in authentic African costume creation and adding colourful authenticity and cultural flare to Mandela Day 2018 at Nelson Mandela Square. The African Carnival will return to the Square on the 21st of July 2018 from 12:30-1:30pm.

Joining the bronze statue of Nelson Mandela overlooking The Square, celebrated Photographer and artist Erhardt Thiel has designed the iMadiba Bench that will become a new feature at Nelson Mandela Square. The bench, constituting the size of Madiba’s cell on Robben Island will be unveiled on the 19th of July 2018.

Nelson Mandela Square has commissioned a 100 Logo installation, in the spirit of the “LOVE” installation in New York City, complete with mirrors to symbolize reflection. Using the official centenary logo from the Nelson Mandela Foundation, the installation aims to draw crowds to this Instagrammable installation to be shared across social media platforms with the #BeTheLegacy hashtag. The installation will live in Nelson Mandela Square, next to Madiba’s statue.

In addition, “Writing on the Wall” will be positioned on Nelson Mandela Square, encouraging people to write and share their messages of hope in continuation of Madiba’s legacy. At the end of this campaign, these messages will be repurposed into stationery bags and donated to underprivileged schools in need.

Preston Gaddy, General Manager of Nelson Mandela Square comments: “Nelson Mandela Square will be transformed into a space of celebration, commemoration, and South African-ness during Madiba’s 100th Centenary. It is a highly auspicious occasion and we are proud to be sharing moments of love, charity and tribute in Madiba’s memory with the public at none other than Nelson Mandela Square”.

On Friday the 20th of July 2018, Nelson Mandela Square have granted permission to Special Olympics South Africa to celebrate their 50th Birthday. They will be lighting up Madiba’s statue in red in celebration and will host the likes of the Chairman of Special Olympics South Africa, Dr Mathews Phosa as well as Ambassadors Gin and Garreth “Soldier Boy” McLellan, Letshego Zulu, Mark Fish, John Vlismas, Kim Jayde and esteemed guests and Special Olympics South Africa staff.

Nelson Mandela said “it always seems impossible until it’s done,” and we look forward to celebrating the centennial milestone of Mandela’s exemplary life with you at Nelson Mandela Square.

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To join the conversation, use the official hashtag #BeTheLegacy #ActionAgainstPoverty and #MandelaDay on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook as well as follow Nelson Mandela Square on Instagram @nelsonmandelasquare, Facebook @nelsonmandelasquare and @nelsonmandelasq on Twitter.

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