In 2009 The United Nations declared July 18th as an international day of service in honor of Nelson Mandela. Mandela, who gave 67 years of his life in service to his country, then called on the world to give 67 minutes of their time in service to their communities on that day.
In 2014 Mandela’s long time personal assistant, Zelda la Grange, challenged her friend, Carolyn Steyn, to make 67 blankets in honor of Nelson Mandala Day. Carolyn, unable to complete the task alone, recruited friends and family to help her with the challenge. This was the beginning of 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day. As a result, the 67 blanket challenge brought together enough people to make 6,000 blankets! On April 21, 2015, more than 9,000 blankets were laid at the foot of the Nelson Mandela statue in front of the Government Buildings in Pretoria, South Africa. 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela claimed a Guinness World Book of Records for the largest crocheted blanket!
Veronica Buzby was born and raised in Durban, South Africa. After leaving South Africa for London, she was soon transferred to America for work. Veronica, who now resides in Baltimore, is very passionate about growing the 67 Blankets campaign in the Baltimore area: “The values that Nelson Mandela espoused transcend across generations and live on beyond his lifetime. There are many in Baltimore in need, who would benefit from this program.”
Veronica reached out to Girl Scouts of Central Maryland and we are honored to help raise awareness of Nelson Mandela and provide blankets to people in need, throughout the world. Other organizations in California, New Jersey, New York, Virginia, Alabama, Maryland, Washington DC, Maine, Connecticut, and Georgia will also be rallying together to make a goal of 670 blankets in 2016. These blankets will be laid around the Nelson Mandela statue in Washington, DC on July 18, 2016. Girl Scouts who participate in blanket making, will be invited to participate in the blanket laying ceremony. Blanket sizes are: baby size: 40″×50,” twin size: 50×70,″ and single square: 10″×10.″
To learn more about 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day, please check out these Facebook pages: 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela (USA – East Coast) and 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela (USA – California) or you can contact Veronica Buzby directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.