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nelsin mandela close up bw

We are all capable of doing good in our communities

On 18 July every year, the United Nations marks and celebrates Nelson Mandela International Day by supporting, encouraging and facilitating people to make a difference within their communities in a plethora of ways. Nelson Mandela day has been set as an international day to remind us that every single one of us has the ability, and more importantly perhaps, the responsibility to change the world around them first, and the world at large as a result of this. This day, which is also accompanied by a world peace conference in September that celebrates the South African President and peace advocate, is a global occasion for us all to take action, inspire change and understand that power we have in working with our immediate communities. making a difference in your communities. 

Amid the chaos of our world today, Mandela day is here to give us hope in one another and to remind us of the power we each have to make positive change happen, however small or big. 

Welcome back to FairPlanet's weekly roundup. This time we will be looking at those who are fighting for peace, no matter the bigotry; no matter the resistance and rise of extreme hate. Mandela day is but an excuse to celebrate our progress toward world peace – even if it seems out of reach right now. Mandela devoted his life to serving humanity. Let us all reflect on those who are doing that same today.

Read. Debate: Engage. 

The good
the squad us congress

fighters of human rights are on the rise

Just this week Donald Trump tweeted that four of the U.S. Congress' new and progressive congresswomen, Alexandria Ocasio Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan should go back to the “broken and crime infested places from which they came”, despite all four of the government officials being U.S. citizens. Indeed this tweet is but another display of Trump's racism and un-American rhetoric. But more importantly, and perhaps more positively, what this tweet exposed is that these four women – the newest, boldest and most diverse additions to Congress – are touching all the rights spots for a leader and a government that wants to curtail peace, equality and harmony. 

While the comments made by the President should be rebutted severely by colleagues of the four congresswomen as well as the press, the real story; or the real focus should be on the sheer power these women have on forces that are working against peace. 

As long a brave, unapologetic and refreshingly progressive individuals continue to – for lack of a better phrase – piss off the man in power, then our inching toward peace and equality nears us. 

The bad

corporate power should strive for global peace plans, instead it is riddled with injustice and impunity

From Ireland to South America, Canadian mining companies wreak havoc in their exploitation of natural resources. They destroy environmental treasures and ravage the natural habitat of local communities across the world. Currently, Canadian mining companies constitute more than 75 percent of mining business worldwide.

The Mining Injustice Solidarity Network (MISN) is a Toronto-based non-profit group of activists that works to resist Canadian mining companies and uplift the communities harmed by their practices. The group also advocates on behalf of indigenous and local communities whose habitats are threatened and harmed by mining companies, and works to promote their independence in determining what type of extraction and economic activities are authorised to take place on their turf. 

It is important that we continue to hold large corporate impunity and give power back to the people on a local level. MISN is one step toward achieving that. 

MISN

Mining Injustice Solidarity Network says ‘enough’ to corporate impunity

by Yair Oded

Support the Mining Injustice Solidarity Network as it advocates on behalf of local communities harmed by mining and resists corporate impunity in Canada.
Cultivating change in our youth
The African Youth Initiative on Climate Change

Betting on Africa’s youth dividend to tackle climate change

by Bob Koigi

Africa’s youthful generation, constituting two-thirds of its total population, has traditionally been associated with the continent’s most biting problems.
raising

This NGO gives thousands of Kenyan youths a ticket to a better future. Support their efforts today.

by Yair Oded

Raising Futures Kenya tackles the country's rampant unemployment and gives vulnerable youths a chance at a better future and an independent life.
kids in war

To Achieve Lasting Security, Invest in Young Peacebuilders

One in every four children around the world – about 535 million – currently live in a country impacted by conflict or disaster, according to the United Nations. Some have been recruited to fight in armed groups, others have been injured by land mines or attacks on civilian infrastructure, such as schools and hospitals.
africa free trade

Africa Continental Free Trade Area: History in the making

by Bob Koigi

Merging 55 countries into a single market of 1.2 billion people and a combined GDP of $2.5 trillion will bolster the miniscule intra Africa trade.
South Africa
south-africa-country-profile

Situated at the very tip of Africa, South Africa has the continent's largest and most developed economies. The country's moniker is the 'rainbow nation' because of its ethnically diverse population – a cause for celebration today which carries a darker past within it. Until 1994, the year Nelson Mandela was elected President in the country's first democratic elections, South Africa was ruled under a white minority government which enforced an apartheid policy, advocating for complete race segregation. 

With a population of 55.5 million citizens, South African has 11 languages officially spoken across the country, including English, Afrikaans, Sesotho, Setswana, Xhosa, and Zulu. While the economy, culture, and science are on the rise, South Africa's people are struggling with severe economic inequality and experiencing the extremes of climate change, with high impacting droughts and serious water shortages as a result. This will be a major challenge in need of innovation in the years to come.