On December 5th the world was shocked at the news of Nelson Mandela leaving this world just to continue his journey in the worlds beyond. I remember reading the news on Facebook and one struck me the most: a friend currently residing in South Africa mentioned her first thought was: “Well, what’s going to happen now?!?” And her second: “He is finally at peace!”
Born in 1918, he would turn 100 years old in 5 years. He lived a long life filled with happiness, hardship, persecution and joy of seeing his work changing the lives of African population in Africa and the world.
A few members of Multicultural Kid Blogs decided to say a few words in order to honour Nelson Mandela’s memory and to show how they were personally impacted by his life’s work.
Becky of Kid World Citizen offers a lesson plan on Nelson Mandela’s autobiography for kids.
Below are a few tributes by other MKB members.
“Growing up I thought of Nelson Mandela as a great courageous person who stood up against oppression and inspired millions of people. While I can’t possibly grasp the whole importance and impact of his cause on people of the world, I can see how it changed lives of some people I know. Our world is still far from perfection and people like Nelson Mandela are inspiration to us on how strong we should be when it comes to foreseeing the future and making live of the children to come already better.”
~ Varya of Creative World of Varya
“For me, the significance of Nelson Mandela in my life isn’t so much what he did. After all, I did not live under apartheid. I think his gift to the wider world is that he taught us how: How to persist in the face of immense odds. How to forgive what seems unforgivable. How to build bridges between unlikely allies. Mandela did not mistake himself for the movement. He knew, from his days in prison and as part of the opposition, and through his days as president, that the power rested with the people. That’s why he doesn’t leave us bereft. He gave us tools that we can pass on, generation to generation. We honor him when we pick them up, and carry them on. Rest in power, Madiba. We remember what we learned.”
“When I heard about the passing of Madiba’s death… I smiled. I smiled because he LIVED! 95 years on this planet and all to effectuate change…. 27 years in prison and it did not harden him…. it made him the legacy that he is. I hope the world will remember his spirit of revolution, his spirit of change and his spirit of tolerance.
“If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner.” – Nelson Mandela“
~ Aisha of Hartlyn Kids
“When I think about Nelson Mandela, I think about the person who changed his country’s legacy, but I also can’t help thinking about Frederik de Klerk who rightfully shared Mandela’s Nobel Prize. I can imagine how difficult it was to win the confidence of white residents of South Africa and end the way of life as they knew it. They both should be celebrated at this moment as heroes of their country.”
~ Natalie of Afterschool for Smarty Pants
“I will never forget when he was freed from jail. It was a time of such great changes in the world, and with his release there was a sense that anything was possible, that the world really could change. His legacy for me will be the power of conviction and the ability of forgiveness and unity to triumph in even the most intransigent cases.”
~ Leanna of All Done Monkey
” I grew up in Apartheid South Africa. People like Nelson Mandela helped me to overcome my shame of being part of such an inhumane society. I’ll always remember the day he was freed, the feeling of possibilities that we all had on that day. And I’ll remember that day in April of 1994 when I stood in line to vote, for the first time voting with people of all color. I’ll forever remember the happiness, hopefulness, ubuntu that we all felt.
Yesterday I watched some of the Nelson Mandela memorial before my kids got up for their snow day. What an amazing celebration of an amazing man. He made all of us South Africans feel proud to be part of the Rainbow Nation. I’ll remember how he always saw the best in everyone he met. His humility. How he treated everyone, from the Queen to the cleaning person, with the same respect.
By the way, did you hear Obama talk about Ubuntu during his eulogy? “And finally, Mandela understood the ties that bind the human spirit. There is a word in South Africa — Ubuntu — a word that captures Mandela’s greatest gift: his recognition that we are all bound together in ways that are invisible to the eye; that there is a oneness to humanity; that we achieve ourselves by sharing ourselves with others, and caring for those around us. … He not only embodied Ubuntu, he taught millions to find that truth within themselves.”
I hope this spirit of Ubuntu will be the gift that South Africa can give the world.”
~ Michelle of MotherTongues
At last, here are some quotes by Nelson Mandela chosen and put together by Daria of Daria Music:
“Man’s goodness is a flame that can be hidden but never extinguished” – Nelson Mandela“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” – Nelson Mandela“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” – Nelson Mandela“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.” – Nelson Mandela
“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.” – Nelson Mandela
“Let there be work, bread, water and salt for all.” – Nelson Mandela
“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” – Nelson Mandela
“The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” Nelson Mandela
“It always seems impossible until it’s done.” – Nelson Mandela
Farewell, Nelson Mandela. And thank you for your world changing work!