KnitWits from around Gauteng will gather at the Nelson Mandela Foundation in Houghton on Monday 27 January 2020 at 5pm to celebrate the legacy and the future of a small social revolution with a big (crocheted) hearts, 67 Blankets.
Looking back on the past six years, during which Guinness World Records have been broken and countless lives warmed through the blankets distributed, founder Carolyn Steyn says: “Who would have thought that what started out six years ago as a simple challenge for me to make 67 blankets by Mandela Day 2014 would change so many lives?
“To think that a simple idea, a ball of wool and a crochet hook would snowball into what many are calling a ‘movement’ – a movement for good and change in this world!”
Steyn says that since 2014, 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day has distributed way more than 67 blankets in South Africa alone to those in need – the figure now runs into the tens of thousands.
“We continue to cross borders, knitting lives together and honouring the legacy of our beloved Madiba with each and every stitch we make. Positive change is, quite literally, ‘in our hands’ now.”
Because the initiative was launched on 27 January 2014 at the Nelson Mandela Foundation – just weeks after the passing of Madiba – it is fitting that the Foundation will be the site of the 67 Blankets sixth birthday celebrations.
Yase Godlo, Director of Mandela Day and Outreach at the Foundation, says: “Having grown in leaps and bounds, 67 Blankets for Mandela Day has shown that all communities can work together to build a caring society. This global initiative’s journey of six years has yielded many lessons and achievements, and the Nelson Mandela Foundation is proud to be associated with this Mandela Day initiative.
“We celebrate this anniversary with all the KnitWits and founder Carolyn Steyn, and thank everyone for their contribution in the fight against poverty.”
KnitWits are invited to bring their completed blankets ahead of the cold winter months, and enjoy entertainment from the likes of PJ Powers, Michael Themba and a marimba band, as the legacy of a great man who sparked an award-winning movement is toasted.