67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day pledges to keep thousands less fortunate, warmer, in the name of our beloved Nelson Mandela.
Stitch by Stitch, his legacy lives on in each blanket lovingly created by our volunteer 'KnitWits' for Madiba with their own two hands.
"Making every day a Mandela Day"
Event: Secret Scarves Shh...
Event: Secret Scarves Shh... Wednesday , July 6th - 3 pm - all around our beautiful land, South Africa.
Poem by Founder : Carolyn Steyn
#RainbowNationBlanketofHope in the news
Have a look at the blanket coverage of our #RainbowNationBlanketOfHope reveal!
Time to get those blankets in ahead of 67 Blankets Rainbow Nation Blanket of Hope grand reveal
There’s less than a month to go before the gigantic Rainbow Nation Blanket of Hope is laid out in Johannesburg as part of the 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day initiative, whose founder, Carolyn Steyn, was recently honoured with the French National Order of Merit.
“KnitWits” around the country have been busy knitting and crocheting up a storm ahead of 11 May 2022, when the massive, colourful “combined” blanket will be laid out at Steyn City School, symbolising the resilience and irrepressible spirit of the South African people during a difficult two years of Covid-19 and lockdowns.
Humanitarian organisation Gift of the Givers will then distribute the individual blankets to people in need ahead of what is expected to be a bitterly cold winter, giving small but meaningful tokens of hope to the rainbow nation.
“This year, we look forward to honouring all our frontline workers, who have worked so tirelessly and selflessly through the pandemic,” says Steyn.
“It’s the ideal opportunity to celebrate all our healthcare workers, teachers, police and emergency services workers, garbage collectors and all those who went out to work on the frontlines, often at great risk to themselves and their families. We hope the symbolic vision the Rainbow Nation Blanket of Hope represents will lift their spirits and remind them of their immense value after a difficult few years.”
Also on board as partners in the Rainbow Nation Blanket of Hope project are Médicins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders), Stuttaford Van Lines (which will be collecting the blankets from around the country and transporting them to Johannesburg for the laying-out event) and the Nelson Mandela Foundation.
The 67 Blankets initiative has received a number of accolades over the years, including holding a Guinness World Record. At the end of March, Steyn, its founder and champion, was awarded the Chevalier de l'Ordre national du Mérite (Knight of the French National Order of Merit) by the French ambassador to South Africa, Aurélien Lechevalier, for her contribution to the deepening of cultural ties between France and South Africa. Her dedication to improving the lives of others, in the form of her cherished 67 Blankets initiative, was also recognised.
For those who have been busily creating these brightly-hued knitted and crocheted squares of hope over the past few months, your ambassadors will be collecting blankets on 25 April 2022 in the following centres:
- Cape Town
- Mossel Bay
- Port Elizabeth
- Facebook: 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day (South Africa) / Gift of the Givers
- Instagram: @67blankets / @of.the.givers
Hashtags: #Rainbownationblanketofhope #67blankets #GiftoftheGivers #MakeaDifference
Carolyn Steyn to receive the National Order of Merit from France
On Wednesday, 30 March 2022, Ambassador of France to South Africa, H.E. Mr. Aurélien Lechevallier, will bestow upon Ms Carolyn Steyn the award of Chevalier de l'Ordre national du Mérite (Knight of the French National Order of Merit) on behalf of President Emmanuel Macron at the French Residence in Pretoria.
This award comes in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the deepening of cultural ties between France and South Africa. Our country, its people, art and music have all been regular themes on her various radio programmes, while she has always had a special place for discussions with the French diplomatic network.
Carolyn Steyn’s passion and love for French culture continues to shine through her work and her dedication to mastering the language. In May 2020, she also joined the committee of friends of the French Institute in South Africa.
Carolyn’s passion also stretches further to her fellow human beings, where her dedication to bettering the lives of people is just as strong her love for France. This is evident in one of her most cherished projects, the 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day initiative, which has become an annual event reaching thousands of people in need across the country.
“This is a special award, to a very close friend of France. Within seconds of speaking to Carolyn Steyn about France, you can sense her undeniable love and passion for our country and its people. This is a very deep connection that we share,” said Ambassador Aurélien Lechevallier.
Rainbow Nation Blanket of Hope - in the news.
To celebrate the compassion and resilience of South Africans through a tough two years of Covid-19 and lockdowns, 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day is partnering with NGO Gift of the Givers to create a gigantic Rainbow Nation Blanket of Hope. For more information on this, have a look at our Projects page.
Have a look at some of the coverage we have received in the press thus far.
Rainbow Nation Blanket of Hope
This year 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day will be paying tribute to the heroes of today, our frontline workers. Founder of the organisation Carolyn Steyn says “We are proud and extremely honoured to be partnering with Gift of the Givers this year, who have truly shown their mettle over the years, providing much needed aid to the poor and vulnerable. Under the leadership of Dr. Imtiaz Sooliman they have been on the frontline of providing relief to millions, not just in South Africa but globally. The thousands of blankets being made by our ‘KnitWits for Madiba’ for our #RainbowNationBlanketOfHope will be displayed on May 11th at Steyn City School, showing the world the meaning of Ubuntu in Action, that we are knitting lives and our nation together through bright, warm, colourful thread.”
Directly after the activation at Steyn City School the blankets will be given directly to Gift of the Givers to distribute to needy communities around South Africa. 67 Blankets Ambassadors and KnitWits are ready, willing and able to assist Gift of the Givers with these distributions.
For more information, have a look at our Projects page.
The 67 Blankets Newsletter for 2021