The 2017 #trekforMandela team, some of whom ghave done a double summit of the highest mountain in Africa. Photo:Instagram/Sello Hatang

Today, 18 July 2017 former statesman and icon Nelson Mandela would be celebrating his 99th birthday. As in the spirit of  the life of Madiba as he was  affectionately known, people all over the world dedicate each year 67 minutes of their time to do good for those less fortunate. 

Declared in November 2009 by the UN General Assembly, Nelson Mandela International Day recognises Madiba's contribution to the culture of peace and freedom, and promoting it throughout the world. Keeping in the spirit of this, some brave citizens of the globe have taken it to the next level, taking it upon themselves to raise awareness for good causes by going out of their way to do good. Here are some volun-tours for Mandela Day that caught our attention:

1.#trekforMandela

Probably the most popular of Mandela Day initiatives is the #trekforMandela initiative where a group of fit and brave men and women take up the baton to hike up to the peak of Mount Kilimanjaro. The hike begins a few days before July 18, with the aim of having the collective summit on Mandela Day. The 30 climbers will take on the 17 kilometer hike, that aims to bring to light the plight of young women for poorer communities are forced to go without sanitary pads-something that the initiative recognizes as being a matter of dignity. 

Last year the hike was marred after the "Fastest brother in Africa" racing car star Gugu Zulu died after struggling to breathe. The Nelson Mandela foundation released a statement shortly after Zulu's death, that the medical team had done everything to save his life. Zulu's wife, Letshego who was with him on the hike last year, promised that she would return to the mountain in 2017, to hike in honour of Gugu.

According to their social media posts, the four that are attempting a double summit have made it up the mountain, while the rest of the collective is expected to summit tonight. 

International climber Werner Gruner said on they summitted at 8am a day ago. 


Meanwhile other climbers like Nelson Mandela Foundation CEO Sello Hatang are showing that they are keeping strong as they tackle the mountain. 




Letshego also posted showing that she is keeping positive on their way up to Uhuru Peak.

Ke nako!! The time is here. #Trek4Mandela2017 #Caring4Girls #Climb4Gugu

A post shared by Letshego Zulu (@letshegozulu) on


2. Walking for Abuse

Keeping his "family" in the loop via Facebook one man is attempting to walk some 1 287km from Cape Town to Mahikeng in order to raise awareness and to educate men on the importance of taking responsibility to stop the abuse of women and children.

Thato Molosankwe, who began his walk earlier this month, will be on this journey till mid-August when he expects to have reached his destination. Speaking to IOL earlier this week, Molosankwe admitted that he had never undertaken such an arduous task, but is kept motivated because it's for a good cause.

An image of Thato Molosankwe on his mission. Photo :Facebook

What are some of the things your are getting up to this #MandelaDay? Tweet us on @IOL_Lifestyle to share some of your snaps.