Nelson Mandela Foundation

South Africa’s democratic vision is about making it possible to give our youth a fighting chance – that is, the opportunity to try. Education is still the foundation of this opportunity. 

Madiba Reads

"Children of today are the leaders of tomorrow and education is a very important weapon to prepare children for their future roles as leaders of the community." – Nelson Mandela 

South Africa’s democratic vision is about making it possible to give our youth a fighting chance – that is, the opportunity to try. Education is still the foundation of this opportunity. The most basic building block that holds that foundation together remains literacy. 

The Nelson Mandela Leadership for Literacy project has identified education, literacy, and cultures of learning and reading as key interlinking aspects of Madiba's legacy. This project promises to promote these aspects and address the specific difficulties in reaching young people with the stories of Mr Mandela’s life and times.

Over a 12-month period, the Nelson Mandela Leadership for Literacy project aims to drive literacy and reading in impoverished areas of the country. The project includes a national roll-out of Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom–facilitated dialogues and the dissemination of two books which, via the Nelson Mandela Foundation's publications programme, have been developed specifically for young people:

  • Nelson Mandela: The Authorised Comic Book, aimed at teenagers

  • The children’s version of Long Walk to Freedom, aimed at six- to 10-year-olds in all South Africa’s official languages

The project plan includes:

  • A free movie screening of Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom

  • An interactive, facilitated dialogue session with relevant influencer and/stalwart (eg: Riaad Moosa and Ahmed Kathrada) on “the Life and Times of Nelson Mandela”

  • Reference to The Authorised Comic Book as a tool and take-home of the The Authorised Comic Book for each child who attends

  • Each educator to receive an “Educator pack” to complement the programme and to use within the classroom context