Nelson Mandela foundation celebrates Tata’s centenary
In celebrating what would have been late President Nelson Mandela’s 100th birthday, the Nelson Mandela foundation has launched the Nelson Mandela Centenary Programme.
The programme was launched at Donaldson Orlando Community Centre on 13 February 2016 , now called YMCA in Orlando, Soweto. The venue is symbolic because it was used by Mandela during his boxing days in the late 1940’s and early 1950’s.
The programme will see the roll-out of a number of activities during 2017 both locally and abroad and will include dialogues, cultural and sporting events, tributes and exhibitions.
The centenary programme which will run for a year until Mandela’s 100th birthday on 18 July 2018 will also include a sequel of Madiba’s autobiography Long Walk To Freedom.
Long Walk to Freedom was first published in 1994 and describes the icon’s struggle against apartheid, coming of age, as well as, his education. The book was dedicated to uTata’s six children and was reprinted in 2013.
The Nelson Mandela foundation says there are also plans to build a structure on the site of Madiba’s grave in the Eastern Cape and allow members of the public to view his gravesite. Following Mandela’s death in December 2013, thousands of people stood in the blistering sun queuing to see Mandela lying in his coffin at the Union Buildings in Pretoria. Madiba was then laid to rest at his Qunu homestead.
School children from across the globe have also been encouraged to write notes to the man affectionately known as the Father of the Nation which will be published in 2018 under a project named “Letters to Madiba”.
The launch of the centenary project comes months before the Nelson Mandela Children’s hospital opens its doors. The Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital Trust is in its final stretch of completing the hospital and has announced a partnership with Canada’s Hospital for Sick Children worth R25 million.
South Africans living in different parts of the world are encouraged to get involved and be part of celebrating Nelson Mandela and reigniting what he stood for.
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