I’m paraphrasing Morgan Freeman where he said in a radio interview last week that “Nelson Mandela is one of the greatest men the human race has ever known” . As South Africans this statement seems almost matter-of-fact. Of course Madiba, everyone’s favourite ‘Tata’, is a great man – it’s just satisfying to know that his appeal spreads across borders and that he is indeed a global icon. With Madiba having turned a staggering 94 years old yesterday came the spate of charity works across the country (and the world, Mr Freeman himself told that he would be spending his 67 minutes doing charity in honour of Madiba) as so many people pledged, and hopefully followed through on, their time and effort to a good cause.
The mere fact that people go out of their way to help others all because they are honouring a great man on his birthday is an amazing feat on its own and the month of July has been dedicated to similar works. The important thing to remember is that , much like the way that Mother’s days and Women’s days and any other once-off celebrations carry the reiteration that special care should be adhered not only on that day but throughout the year on an ongoing basis, so too should one view the celebration of Madiba Magic and the pursuit of extending helping hands in any way whatsoever, no matter how small the feat.
This is the living legacy of our great leader, so that, on the sad day that he comes to pass, as we all must, he will live on in so much more than just a celebration of his life, and in a surge of charity around his day of birth, but rather in a celebration of his legacy ever after!
Happy Birthday month Tata! We love you!