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Concert and Presentations to Follow the Spirit of Mandela Freedom Walk

Following the Spirit of Mandela Freedom Walk on Saturday, June 20 there will be a live concert in Queen’s Park, beginning at 1:30 pm!

The concert features top performers such as Digging Roots, 2010 Juno Award winner for Aboriginal Album of the Year, singer-songwriter Amanda Martinez, Lorraine Klaasen, the eclectic South African Canadian performer, hip hop artist, Najjah Calibur, and spoken-word artist, Dwayne Morgan.

The Hon. Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario, John Tory, Mayor of Toronto, His Excellency Membathisi Mdladlana, High Commissioner for South Africa, Hon. David Onley, former Lieutenant Governor of Ontario will bring greetings.

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Akua Benjamin, veteran social justice activist of Toronto will be our keynote speaker. The event emcee will be Farley Flex.

Register for the Event Here

Mandela’s legacy inspires Canadians to take part in the Spirit of Mandela Freedom Walk

TORONTO, Ontario – Mandela Legacy Canada (MLC) hosts the Spirit of Mandela Freedom Walk on Saturday June 20th on University Avenue, ceremonially designated by the City of Toronto as Nelson Mandela Boulevard. This occasion marks the 25th anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s first visit to Canada. It will honour the memory and legacy of the iconic South African statesman and president whom Canada had made an honorary citizen. The Walk is expected to bring together hundreds of individuals committed to Mandela’s vision of an inclusive society free from all forms of discrimination.

“Although Mandela is the source of inspiration for the Freedom Walk”, says Lloyd McKell, MLC chair, “the Freedom Walk is about our own commitment to a society that respects human rights for all, including the rights of First Peoples of Canada. The Walk pays tribute to First Peoples on the eve of National Aboriginal Day.

Students from Nelson Mandela Park Public School will lead the Freedom Walk from the corner of Armoury Street and University Avenue at about 12:00 p.m. and proceed north to Queen’s Park, accompanied by African drumming. Participants will bring signs, banners, and percussion instruments to create excitement and music along the Freedom Walk.
The Queen’s Park ceremony begins at 1:30 p.m. and will feature remarks by the Hon. Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario, John Tory, Mayor of Toronto, His Excellency Membathisi Mdladlana, High Commissioner for South Africa, Hon. David Onley, former Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, and Akua Benjamin, veteran social justice activist of Toronto. The concert features today soccer betting tips top performers such as Digging Roots, 2010 Juno Award winner for Aboriginal Album Of The Year, singer-songwriter Amanda Martinez, Lorraine Klaasen, the eclectic South African Canadian performer, hip hop artist, Najjah Calibur, and spoken-word artist, Dwayne Morgan. Host of the ceremony will be Farley Flex, motivational speaker and former Canadian Idol judge.

About Mandela Legacy Canada
The MLC is a not-for-profit community organization formed following Nelson Mandela’s passing in December 2013. MLC is made up of a Board of Directors and a membership of volunteers from diverse sectors of the community.The committee seeks to promote the legacy of Nelson Mandela by initiating and supporting activities in Canada, which preserve the memory of Mandela’s life and achievements. For more information: www.mandelacanada.com or mail@mandelacanada.com

FreedomWalkLogo-EventbriteMedia Contacts

Lloyd McKell, Chair
Mandela Legacy Canada
E: Lloyd.mckell@rogers.com
Res: 416-755-8476
Cell: 647-200-5808

Joan Pierre, Event Planner
E: jampierre@rogers.com
C: 416-579-8377

Mandela and Canada: 25 Years of Inspiration

Mandela’s Legacy More Than Symbolic

On February 11, 1990, Nelson Mandela emerged from twenty-seven years of imprisonment as a political prisoner of the South African government. On that memorable day, the world greeted his release with relief and jubilation. Mandela’s release signalled the beginning of the end of apartheid and began the country’s journey towards the first democratic government. He was elected president in April 1994.

Mandela’s approach to nation-building is perhaps the world’s most remarkable example of commitment to democratic ideals in our time. Consider for example his concluding words to the court in 1964 when he faced the possible death penalty for so-called treason: “I cherish the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities… It is an ideal for which I am prepared to die”. Facing the prospect of death by the state, Mandela held fast to his principles.

Consider as well, that despite the suffering caused by apartheid and despite his long years of harsh punishment in prison, Mandela sought to pursue the path of negotiation, accommodation and reconciliation with his former enemies. For him, that was the only way to establish the foundation for democracy in his country.

Mandela’s concern for the poor, disadvantaged children of South Africa is well-known. While President, he donated one-third of his salary to those children through the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund. That same concern led him to declare to the students of Nelson Mandela Park Public School in Regent Park, Toronto in November 2001, that he loved them as if they were his own grandchildren.

As Canadians, we can be justifiably proud of our government’s role in pressuring the South African government to end the oppression of its people. Prime ministers from John Diefenbaker to Brian Mulroney consistently condemned apartheid. Mulroney led the Commonwealth effort to impose economic sanctions on South Africa and the call for the release of Mandela. Mandela thanked Canadians for their support on several occasions.

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Canada recognized the special meaning that Mandela had for us by conferring on him the status of Honorary Companion of the Order of Canada and Honorary Citizen. The cities of Ottawa and Toronto named a prominent public square and a main street respectively after him. The Toronto and Peel public school boards named schools in his honour. Ryerson University presented him with an honorary degree. Recently, a commemorative Canadian Nelson Mandela stamp was issued.

These symbols of honour bestowed on Mandela are important reflections of our respect and admiration for this great man and what he has achieved. But what is more important is how we in our society reflect his vision in our personal, professional, and public lives; how we commit to building an inclusive society free from all forms of discrimination. That is the true legacy of Nelson Mandela. That makes his legacy more than symbolic.

We have made great strides in accommodating diversity in our country and are recognized around the world for our achievements in social and cultural integration. But we must continue to work harder at addressing those areas of our experience where racism, sexism, homophobia, discrimination because of disability and social class create conflict and lead to differences in productivity and quality of life between groups. In particular, we need to resolve the fundamental inequities affecting the First Peoples of Canada.

If as a nation we pursue this path to a just, harmonious and inclusive society, we will reflect both Nelson Mandela’s vision and our own hopes for the kind of democracy we want for ourselves and for future generations.

Canada Post Unveils Mandela Stamp, January 27, 2015

Mandela_Stamp

Nelson Mandela stamp unveiled by Canada Post
Stamp available for purchase on Jan. 30

CBC News, posted January 27, 2015

Canada Post unveiled a new stamp on Tuesday to commemorate the life of South Africa’s anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela and his relationship with Canada.
The stamp, unveiled at Nelson Mandela Park Public School in Toronto, features a photograph taken on Mandela’s first visit to Canada in 1990, just four months after his release from prison. The South African flag and the country’s landscape can be seen in the background.
Mandela was a prominent international figure for more than half a century, first as a leading human rights campaigner in South Africa and then as the world’s best-known political prisoner.
After spending 27 years in prison, he became the leader of the anti-apartheid struggle, and then the first president of a democratic South Africa.

He died in December 2013 at his home in Johannesburg after a prolonged lung infection. He was 95.
Mandela visited Canada three times and called Canada a home away from home. He received the Order of Canada and became an honorary Canadian citizen.
“Our stamp program seeks to tell the stories of people who have had a powerful effect on our society, and Nelson Mandela’s story is among the most powerful,”  Deepak Chopra, president and CEO of Canada Post, said in a release.

Good timing, Tory says

Immigration Minister Chris Alexander, who attended the unveiling, recalled Mandela’s 2001 visit to the Toronto school that’s now named after him.
“It’s a great day for the students of this school who have this connection and it’s a great day for Canadians who have this admiration for Nelson Mandela,” he said.
Toronto Mayor John Tory called the release of the stamp “good timing,” as it will become available just in time for Black History Month in February.
The stamp, measuring 32 by 32 millimetres, comes in booklets of 10 and will be available for purchase on Jan. 30. An official first day cover and souvenir sheet with an international rate stamp are also available.