African Leadership University

Mandela Day 2019

Every year on July 18th, Mandela Day brings together the whole world to honor the legacy of Nelson Mandela and his contribution to the struggle against apartheid in South Africa.

This year, in order to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Mandela Day, the Mandela Institute of Development Studies (MINDS), in collaboration with ALU, among other institutions, has organized a compelling campaign called #MyMandelaMoment, under their wider #Africanness campaign.

#MyMandelaMoment was a massive campaign which highlighted leadership narratives of some beneficiaries of the Mandela Centinal Scholarship at ALU Rwanda, alongside other members of the ALU Community and her sister institutions.

Participants of this campaign were encouraged to take pictures with MINDS-provided “lips”, which represented their voices, and share them alongside their leadership narratives (a.ka. their Mandela Moment) on social media channels.

This campaign gave members of the ALU Community an opportunity to walk in the shoes of Nelson Mandela as a leader and reflect on their leadership contributions to their community. Their reflections provided much wisdom and insights on the impact of the liberation struggle that Nelson Mandela championed during his time.

Some of the reflections shared are the following ones:

Being inspired by iconic leaders like Nelson Mandela, who famously said, ‘Children are our greatest treasure. They are our future!’ The Africa I would like to create, is one where Maternal Health Care is prioritized. This can be done by incorporating technology and innovation to reduce infant mortality rates and conditions like obstetric fistula, that affect many young African women.

Daisy Mukasa – Mandela 100 Scholar, ALU


The fortunes of Africa have changed tremendously since the independence era began, #MyMandelaMoment campaign calls for all Africans to change the narrative and the face of atrocities that the continent has seen in the last half-century in the enduring struggle for democracy. I believe that African youth ought to be the flag-bearers of change and bring the development of our local communities and take this change to a global scale.

Stephen Anjelo – Mandela 100 Scholar, ALU


I dream of an Africa that is filled with knowledge and an understanding of its worth, beauty and potential. An Africa that is crazy enough to see beyond the current debts, corruption, diseases, and other injustices. An Africa that is bold enough to believe that it has all the capacity and resources needed to emerge the world’s best continent at its disposal with young people as the driving force for this change.

Mable Chileshe – Mandela 100 Scholar, ALU


Nelson Mandela has always been an inspirational figure for me. As a young entrepreneur, the #MyMandelaMoment campaign for me means that I will be keen to integrate the shared-value principles for inclusivity in our communities, which will take businesses to the next level and make not only Africa, but the entire globe an economic powerhouse. I believe that shared-value thinking will provide the leeway needed to take a deep dive into a business case for making the shift to profit with a purpose!

Sharleen Kemunto Nyakundi – Mandela 100 Scholar, ALU


During the day, ALU also featured reflections from some of the Mandela scholars, which recounted how much their scholarship has contributed to their first academic year.
As we come to the end of this campaign, we hope that this will not mark the end of our Mandela moments. We should aim to make every day our Mandela moment by performing acts of servant leadership that will make a difference in our communities because just like Mandela always said, “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.”

No big difference we make in our society comes easy, but according to the words of Mandela himself, “It always seems impossible until it is done.”

So what is your Mandela moment today?

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