Nelson Mandela Day is an annual global celebration that takes place on 18 July to honour the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela. This day is a call to action for individuals, communities, and organisations to take time to reflect on Mandela’s values and principles and to make a positive impact in their own communities. Read more here.


From the streets to the squares, Mandela’s name marks not just locations but milestones of humanity’s journey towards freedom and justice. Share your story of visiting a place named after Nelson Mandela. Whether it’s a park, school, or street in your community. Let’s celebrate his legacy together!

How to participate:

  • Choose a social media channel such as Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, X (Twitter), LinkedIn, YouTube or TikTok.
  • Write a post and include the following hashtags so that we can trace your story: #Itisinyourhands; #shareyourstories; #namedafternelson
  • Upload a photograph of the place named after Nelson Mandela (optional)
  • Repost and share other people’s stories that celebrates Nelson Mandela’s legacy.

If you haven’t visited a place named in Nelson Mandela’s honour before, consider discovering such locations. You can use our South African list or Google Maps to discover places to which you can plan a trip for Nelson Mandela Day.


Calling all young and energetic people on TikTok! Join our #MadibaDance challenge and pay tribute to Nelson Mandela’s legacy through dance.

What does Nelson Mandela mean to you. Select the words you associate with his legacy and perform your unique “MadibaDance” at a local landmark named after Nelson Mandela (see places we know about).  If there’s no such landmark nearby, film yourself at the Mandela Day walk/run on July 20th or other event in Madiba’s name.

How to participate:

  • Choose the words that represents Madiba’s legacy to you from the list (e.g. courage + freedom + peace)
  • Create your #MadibaDance by combining the various dance moves of the words you selected.
  • Charge your phone and get ready to record your dance moves in a location named after Madiba.​
  • Edit your video and insert audio and photographs if you want to. The video should be between 30-60 seconds.​
  • Upload your video to TikTok with the following hashtags: #MadibaDance, #namedafternelson, #Itisinyourhands.​
  • Share and reshare #MadibaDance videos that you like.​

Dance moves for the #MadibaDance

  • Courage: Demonstrate courage using bold, dynamic movements such as arms flexed in a powerful pose, displaying strong muscles and taking a stand with impressive Power Moves convey a message of strength and empowerment.
  • Dignity: Reflect dignity through Jazz, with elegant, poised movements characterized by graceful steps, upright posture, and refined hand gestures, showcasing self-respect and honour with style and finesse.
  • Fighter: Convey the spirit of a fighter using Boxing, incorporating strong, sharp movements such as punches, displaying resilience and overcoming obstacles with energetic and intense sequences.
  • Forgiveness: Start with your hands open and relaxed throughout the movement. As you open your arms and reach for the sky, imagine you’re releasing a physical weight or burden. You will then allow your head to fall back further, as if tears might stream down your face.
  • Freedom: This dance incorporates movements symbolizing freedom and is inspired by Nelson Mandela. It serves as a personal expression of freedom, self-love, self-expression, and personal connection, combining an outward gesture of power (raising a fist) with an inward connection (placing a hand on the heart).
  • Hope: Symbolise hope with Bhangra, featuring gentle, optimistic movements like soft twirls, graceful reaches, and light footwork, gradually building in intensity and brightness to reflect growing confidence and optimism.
  • Inspire: Uplifting and motivating movements like tiptoeing on the tips of your feet, holding your chin high, and enthusiastic jumps. Having rhythmic and engaging steps that let your body move to an imagined beat, incorporating playful footwork and dynamic changes in direction.
  • Justice: Performing a high-energy dance move reminiscent of the Justice Dance. The character strikes a pose with one arm extended and the other bent at the elbow, evoking a sense of motion and excitement.
  • Leadership: Depict leadership through Ballet, with confident, authoritative movements such as leading steps, assertive hand gestures, and guiding motions, showcasing leadership with elegance and precision.
  • Peace: This movement embodies tranquillity through soft, flowing gestures. Imagine gentle waves of the arms, slow, deliberate sweeps up and down, and smooth, continuous steps. Each movement is unhurried and linked, conveying a sense of serenity and calm.
  • Perseverance: Capture perseverance with Hip Hop, using resilient, determined movements like repetitive steps, pushing forward gestures, and overcoming obstacles, embodying persistence with dynamic and powerful choreography.
  • Rainbow Nation: Express the concept through Afro Dance (Amapiano) by incorporating colourful, diverse routines with elements from various dance styles, symbolizing the blending of different cultures and ethnicities with vibrant and energetic movements.
  • Sacrifice: This movement portrays the concept of sacrifice through symbolic gestures. Open palms facing outwards represent offering, while crossed palms placed on the chest signify selflessness. The dance incorporates movements that reflect giving and helping others. Imagine gestures like reaching out and lifting imaginary burdens, symbolizing the act of sacrifice.
  • Service: Represent the spirit of service through the Handshake Dance. Highlight the essence of collaboration, unity, and support with every movement.
  • Unity: Emphasizing togetherness and harmony. a dynamic pose with one foot forward and both arms bent. The dance conveys a sense of joy and collective energy, highlighting the power of dance to bring people together.
Rainbow Nation

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