The annual Nelson Mandela Challenge is one way of honouring the late father of the nation president Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela’s nation –building efforts as well as the football fraternity’s yearly pledge to the cause of children.
Last year, South Africa met and beat Ivory Coast 2-0 in the Nelson Mandela Challenge march and in keeping up with the tradition of bringing top sides, Senegal and Bafana Bafana will do the honours this year.“From the first game that South Africa played against Zambia at the FNB Stadium in 1994, to the very last one against Cote d’Ivoire at Mbombela Stadium in Mpumalanga last year, the Nelson Mandela Challenge has been a 21-year journey that has seen the Fund and SAFA being fellow travellers to raise awareness for the cause of children, bring cheer to the football-loving community and celebrating Madiba’s legacy,” said Ms Sibongile Mkhabela, CEO of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund.
A nation that works, dreams plays and fills sports fields with cheering fans and shining stars bur never forgets to spare a thought for its children, is the one that Madiba established the Fund for. Every edition of the Nelson Mandela Challenge is a reminder that there is no better foundation for any nation than its children. We are deeply honoured that every stakeholder that never tires to make this tournament possible, subscribes to the joy of making children’s life a celebration.
“We’ve decided that we need to link the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund with our under 13 and under 15 league so that this leagues can also bear the name of this great icon, and this year not only are we increasing our annual contribution to the Children’s Fund but we are also increasing our involvement with the Children’s Fund. As SAFA we going to make sure that our 3million members are contributing to the completion of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital, our golf day will also be dedicated to Madiba’s legacy,’ – Mr. Dennis Mumble (SAFA CEO).