Rhodes University to spend a full week honouring MadibaDate Released: Tue, 17 July 2018 09:29 +0200
For this year’s Nelson Mandela centenary celebrations, Rhodes University’s Community Engagement division has seven full days’ worth of activity planned in honour of Madiba’s birthday.
Between 18 and 24 July, Rhodes University will be engaging in activities in service of humanity, in line with the national and global Mandela Day campaign that calls individuals and organisations to action 67 minutes in betterment of the world.
“There are currently 155 events scheduled across Grahamstown, which is a record,” explained Rhodes University Community Engagement Director, Di Hornby. This figure is up from 121 events last year.
The main activity that Rhodes will engage in for the seven days is its Trading Live for Mandela initiative, which it has been doing successfully for five years.
“During Trading Live for Mandela Week, student and community organisations, departmental staff, businesses and schools all participate in a bumper community engagement initiative to build new relationships of reciprocity across Grahamstown,” Hornby explained.
This is achieved by making and accepting offers to trade skills, talents, interests and/or hobbies with other interested parties. “We all have something to offer our community and this year we have received some very creative trading and interesting participation ideas,” said Hornby. “Our Trading Live initiative aims to move away from the idea of ‘charity’ and to instead forge a positive community building approach by sharing the assets we all have across Makhanda. This dispels the myth that economically disadvantaged people have no assets and encourages everyone to contribute towards a shared goal.”
One of the events scheduled to take place is the preschool book reading project, where 15 pre-primary schools will be read to by a volunteer, who will then donate the book to the preschool.
There will also be a cake cutting ceremony on Mandela’s 100th birthday anniversary on Mandela Day 18 July, where Rhodes University Vice-Chancellor Dr Sizwe Mabizela, and Rhodes University Registrar, Dr Adele Moodly with both be in attendance.
Furthermore, a resident at Grahamstown’s Ethembeni Service Centre for the Elderly will be turning 100 on 18 July, and the Community Engagement team will be throwing her a centenary birthday celebration.
“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