Nelson Mandela Foundation

Mandela Day2021

“As long as poverty, injustice and gross inequality exist in our world, none of us can truly rest.”  Nelson Mandela, Make Poverty History, London, 2005

The COVID-19  pandemic has exacerbated existing crises and made it more challenging to meet the demands of social justice. This moment in history has come with the devastating loss of life, exposed the fragility of health systems and aggravated food insecurity for many communities.  Millions of livelihoods have been lost, and people have become increasingly dependent on one another to survive.

According to Ipsos, “Almost half (46%) of adult South Africans surveyed in late 2020 said that their households often had to go to bed hungry during the Covid-19 pandemic as we did not have enough money for food”. 

However, as dire as things seem, people in South Africa can be proud of our history and fearless culture of solidarity and coming together to overcome seemingly insurmountable challenges. When we come together, we can achieve the impossible. 

Mandela Day Champions and members of the Nelson Mandela Day Global Network have followed the clarion call to take action, inspire change, making every day a Mandela Day for the past 12 years. We are grateful to each of you for living the legacy by taking #ActionAgainstPoverty. This year, the fight against poverty continues. 

Our Each1Feed1 programme was launched in 2020 to meet the immediate needs of our most vulnerable communities. With Mandela Day 2021, we will continue to address the immediate challenge of families in our communities that do not have access to food. In the long term, Mandela Day is committed to tackling the systemic challenge of food insecurity and undertaking the research and advocacy required to contribute to the identification of sustainable, long-term solutions to food security. You can support the Each1Feed1 campaign here:

This Nelson Mandela Day, the call to action for the people of South Africa is for each of us to ignite the embers of ubuntu and tackle food insecurity by working together.

Introducing the Nelson Mandela International Day theme for 2021: One Hand Can Feed Another.

To find out more about how the Foundation has answered this call to action and how you can support this effort, visit