July is an especially exciting and heart-warming month for Rays of Hope and the residents of Alexandra Township, as people from all walks come together in the name of doing good for others.

For our international readers who aren’t aware, South Africans celebrate the late Nelson Mandela’s legacy every year on 18 July, spending 67 minutes engaged in acts of charity and kindness for what has come to be known as ‘Mandela Day’.

We were fortunate enough to be inundated with volunteers this year, as individuals and companies from across industries approached Rays of Hope to offer their time, skills, and resources. As we had already filled all the available volunteer spots on our projects, we decided to partner with other charitable organisations in Alexandra Township to accommodate the extra hands and spread the love even further.

We had a total of 17 businesses taking part in our Mandela Day programmes and partnership projects, including businesses from corporate banking sector, the hospitality industry, retailers and government organisations, who all made a positive impact on our community in one way or another. Many of these volunteers visited Alex for the first time, getting the chance to see first-hand what life in Alex is really like.

Some delivered care packages to our Gogos and hampers with a range of goodies and to the children who are part of our Ithemba Labantwana programme as well as those at local day care centres. Others spent time sprucing up playgrounds and garden areas, and even provided coding lessons to high school learners and unemployed individuals. Many also catered tea-time treats and lunch for the day.

We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to all those who joined us for our Mandela Day activities in and around Alex, and encourage other individuals, businesses and organisations to come and experience Alex too. Find out more about the Rays of Hope Alex Tours and our many volunteer programmes on our website.