July 18: Nelson Mandela International Day

Every year Nelson Mandela International Day is marked all over the world on July 18. The day was officially declared by the United Nations in 2009 and the first UN Mandela day was observed in 2010.


The day is observed as a global call to action that celebrates the idea, “Every individual has the power to transform the world”.

Nelson Mandela

He was born on July 18, 1918. Nelson Mandela International Day is celebrated on his birth anniversary.

Mandela served as the president of South Africa between 1994 and 1999. He was the first black head of the state.

He co-founded the militant Umkhonto we Sizwe in 1961. It was the armed wing of African National Congress. Nelson Mandela ended apartheid. Apartheid was a system of institutionalized racial segregation that prevailed in South West Africa and South Africa from 1948.


Nelson Mandela received more than 260 awards. He won the Nobel Prize for peace in 1993. In 1990, the India Government awarded the Bharat Ratna for his role in anti-apartheid movement. Bharat Ratna is one of the highest civilian awards in India.