from Jessica (aged 8):
I found out about Nelson Mandela for my school project, and it was really interesting. He fought for equality for black and white people in South Africa and risked his life for black people. I talked to my Granny on FaceTime and told her all about what I had found out. She sent me a postcard she had of Nelson Mandela’s cell on Robben Island where he was in prison, and I showed it to my teacher on Zoom. Then I did a Powerpoint presentation all about Nelson Mandela and his amazing life. Here are some of the things I found out:
He was a lawyer.
In 1948 the South African government introduced a system called apartheid where black and white people were separated. e.g. The couldn’t sit next to each other on buses, they couldn’t go to the same school, they couldn’t live in the same area
He fought against apartheid to get equality for black people.
He was sentenced to go to prison first for 5 years for being part of a secret army. Then he was sentenced for 27 years behind bars for plotting to overthrow the government.
He refused freedom twice because he wanted to stand by what he believed in so he stayed in jail. He became a famous prisoner and people all around the world called to free Nelson Mandela.
In 1993 the president of South Africa set him free
Nelson was president of the ANC (African National Congress) and worked with the president of South Africa in a peaceful way to improve black peoples lives.
Because of their hard work, in 1993 the president of South Africa and Nelson won the Nobel Peace Prize.
In 1994 he became the first black president in South Africa.
He worked hard to make South Africa a place where people of all race and colour live together in peace.
Note from editors: Jessica also found out about Tanni Grey Thompson. She was paralysed with spina bifida at the age of 7 and became a very successful athlete. We’ll include her presentation about her in the next issue.
Please write and tell us about any person you admire – (they don’t have to be famous.)