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July 24 2014

Operation HOPE South Africa Celebrates Mandela Day and His Long Walk to “Financial” Freedom

Progress continues in South Africa with 50,000 Students Empowered

On July 18, Operation HOPE South Africa celebrated Mandela Day and Savings Month with children and adults in Heideveld and Diepsloot. At the end of the day’s activities the Banking On Our Future savings course was taught to the kids as part of the Long Walk to “Financial” Freedom.

HOPE South Africa is also celebrating the achievement of empowering more than 50,000 children and adults on financial dignity and literacy. In addition to this achievement, Citi recently renewed its commitment to support the Banking on Our Future program through 2015. Also, in Johannesburg, HOPE's key volunteer partner, the Peace Corps provided a new fellow, Connie Ginger, to assist the staff for the next two years.

The Banking on Our Future team on the Western Cape spent the morning celebrating Nelson Mandela’s birthday with children living in a safe house in the Heideveld region. In collaboration with Zoe Trust and Straatwerk, more than 50 children and adults from the community and HOPE Corps Volunteers participated in a full day of activities.

The festivities started with Team Talk groups, where children and adults discussed Mandela’s autobiography and the movie based on it the, Long Walk To Freedom. Discussion focused on reasons for Mandela’s incarceration, release from Robbin Island and his term as the first black South African President during the dawn of democracy.

The kids played games and sang songs in a tribute to Mandela followed by lunch provided by the Zoe Trust. The children also presented their entrepreneurial ventures and shared their progress from the Banking On Our Future course. The day closed with prayers for South Africa.

At the Afrika Tkkun Centre in Diepsloot (outside of Johannesburg) Operation HOPE Johannesburg celebrated Mandela Day with more than 200 children and adults participating in a walk themed "Walking towards Financial Freedom." This was followed by a presentation on saving money and how it leads to a better life. The children presented Mandela's messages of a better life for all. The ceremony concluded by singing the "Happy birthday" song to Madiba.