Mandela Day 18 July 2023

Mandela Day is an annual celebration on the 18th of July to honour the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s former President. It is a call to action for individuals, communities and organisations to take the time to reflect on Mandela’s values and principles. It celebrates Mandela’s life’s contribution towards peace and freedom and shines a light on the legacy of the man who changed the path of South Africa forever.  We all admire the principles he held and we, at WIZO, demonstrate this through volunteering and community service in an effort to put these values into action.

You often hear people say that they are volunteering 67 minutes of their time for Mandela Day.  We mark the 67 years that Nelson Mandela spent on Robben Island and as a public servant, under ghastly circumstances, by fighting for social justice, equality and the promotion and protection of human rights for all.  All communities will be positively impacted with the power to transform lives for the better if we devote 67 minutes or more of our time to volunteering, just like we do with WIZO.  In this way, these communities make a small contribution to society, and like us at WIZO, stand in solidarity with those who need it most.   

Every person has the responsibility to be part of the solution to change the world for the better! Mandela Day is a time to take action and inspire change, not just on this particular day, but on each and every day.  We can do this by feeding the hungry, spending time with the young or elderly, learning about social justice or raising money for a cause we believe in. This opens our eyes and creates much awareness for WIZO’s ongoing projects in Israel such as our day care centres, youth villages, old age homes and homes for abused women and children who are victims of domestic violence and who cannot help themselves. 

Mandela dedicated his service to the betterment of humanity with his profound belief in the equality and dignity of every man, woman and child.  This prime example that he set, is one that we, at WIZO, diligently follow.  We do this by volunteering our time and actioning effective plans to donate and raise funds in support of WIZO, a cause that is greater than us and that ultimately sustains our beloved Israel.    Like the ethos of Mandela day, we at WIZO understand that positive change begins with small actions.  As each of us take action for WIZO and continue to do what matters, we fuel momentum toward constructive change and help those in need, positively elevating the State of Israel.  Nelson Mandela so eloquently said: “It is in your hands to make a better world for all who live in it” ….. and this is exactly what we at WIZO do.

Given the challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality, South Africans have been encouraged to make everyday a Mandela Day or in our case, a WIZO day.  We do this by assisting those in need within our local communities and in Israel. 

Nelson Mandela stated, “Vision without action is just a dream, action without vision just passes the time and vision with action can change the world.” 

The fruits of our labours are evident in the maintenance and sustenance of the homes we support and where we continue to make a genuine difference in the lives of the most vulnerable. 

I applaud you all for your hard work and efforts and from the depths of my being thank those of you who do take action and inspire positive change!  

Warm regards


Shelley Trope-Friedman

President WIZO South Africa