A Troublemaker by Any Other Name

by Marina M.

His name was Rolihlahla. It means “troublemaker” in Xhosa. But the world knew him as Nelson Mandela. And, as a result of his life’s work, on July 18 we honor him, and the political and social changes he achieved, with Mandela Day.

Social Justice & Activism

For 67 years (27 of them as a political prisoner) Nelson Mandela worked as an advocate for human rights. Rightly so, Mandela’s focus was his home country of South Africa in a fight against apartheid. Nevertheless, Mandela’s words and actions reached so many more people around the world. Because right now, during this world-wide pandemic, the fight for human rights and social justice continues globally. With protests in support of, but not limited to, Black Lives Matter, LGBTQIA+, and reproductive rights. Nelson Mandela, and others like him, paved the way for this perpetual activism.

Continuing His Legacy

In 2009 the Nelson Mandela Foundation celebrated the inaugural year of Mandela Day. And, every year participants receive a volunteer challenge. However, it’s always the same challenge. They are asked to volunteer 67 minutes of their time on July 18 to their community. That is just one minute to signify for each year Mandela fought for civil and human rights. And under the continuous #actionagainstpoverty advocacy Mandela Day 2020 efforts will focus on education and food and nutrition.

More about the life and work of Nelson Mandela in the resource list below.

Nelson Mandela: Troublemaker

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