Port Vila, Vanuatu (PressExposure) July 26, 2009 -- A former president of South Africa, Nelson Mandela has celebrated his 91st birthday, with his family. He was the first black South African leader and has known a long and eventful journey to freedom. Mandela is a living legend in his own time.
In honor of the famous man, people right around the world are being encouraged to dedicate just 67 minutes of their day to volunteer for community service.
Mandela again became the head of the African National Congress the day he left jail, after completing 27 years in prison. Mandela was a major factor in forging the transition towards multi-racial democracy in South Africa, helping to bring to an end the violent reign of repression and violence caused through apartheid. Mandela thrust the country to the first multi-racial elections.
In 1964, in defense of his case, Mandela said in his speech from the dock, "During my lifetime I have dedicated myself to the struggle of the African people. I have fought against white arena, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die".
Mandela became recognized as the most significant black president in South Africa, during his long imprisonment. Mandela gained a degree of Bachelor of Law from the University of London, while in jail.
Including the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993, Mandela has received over 400 awards, over a forty year period. Mandela was awarded the Oder of Merit and Order of St John from Queen Elizabeth II, the Presidential Medal of Freedom from George W. Bush, the Ataturk Peace Award from Turkey and the Bharat Ratna Award from the government of India.
"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the worldâ¦It is through education that a daughter of a peasant can become a doctor, that a child of farm worker can become the presidentâ¦Only education will make lasting changes", was one of Mandela's enduring statements on education.
Following what Mandela believed in, help us to assist some really great children who can't assist themselves. They will never have the privilege of a high school education without your help. You can make a real difference in just one kid's life. You might also win a tropical island holiday and a tremendous holiday home at the same time. Like the supporters of Mandela say, take a few minutes to make a difference.
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