Vietnam to celebrate Nelson Mandela International Day

A series of events across Vietnam before and on July 18 will mark the celebration of Nelson Mandela International Day on the occasion of his 93rd birthday.

The United Nations in Vietnam, the South African Embassy in Vietnam, in collaboration with foreign embassies, the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organizations,  and the Ministry of Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs have contributed and donated towards the celebrations this year for the event themed “Take action. Inspire change. Make every day a Mandela Day”.

The beneficiaries for this year’s contributions and donations will be a group of physically challenged young people at the Thien Phuc Humanitarian Center in the northern province of Bac Giang. They will be presented with sewing machines to enable them to increase production of items such as eco-bags which they make to earn a living.

The highlight of the celebrations is a Gala Dinner and Dance to be organised in September 2011 for fundraising and give credence to the call “Make Every Day a Mandela Day”.

All events will recognise Nelson Mandela’s values and persona as part of our legacy and heritage and will involve a broad spectrum of participants which will include leaders in government, politicians, diplomats and members of the international community, business people, artists, musicians, activists, universities and the Vietnamese community. 

In 2009, the United Nations declared July 18 as Nelson Mandela International Day. It was in recognition of the 67 years that Nelson Mandela spent in serving humanity and fighting for freedom and justice.

The significance of Nelson Mandela International Day is a call to inspire communities, organisations and individuals to change the conditions around them for the better and to render service to the disadvantaged for 67 minutes.

The celebrations seek to mobilise solidarity of the international community in entrenching the values of freedom and justice that Nelson Mandela fought for and to assist disadvantaged communities and individuals. It is about creating a global movement for good, as it recognises that positive change begins with small and individual actions and serves as a catalyst for people around the world to realise that each and every one of us has the ability to change the world.

By Uyen Phuong

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