67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day

by guest blogger Veronica Buzby

About 18 months ago, Zelda la Grange, long time Personal Assistant to former President Nelson Mandela, presented her friend Carolyn Steyn with the challenge of making 67 blankets by Nelson Mandela Day in 2014. (July 18th). Obviously this would be impossible for her to do alone, so she reached out to her friends, and to their friends, to help her make blankets, which would be given to the needy. As a result, 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day was formed. South Africa has had an enormous response to this call to action. They exceeded the challenge of 67 blankets by at least 6,000! By April 21st of 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!


statue 1

This movement has gone global! We are just getting started in the USA. We knit, crochet, or quilt blankets for the needy in our areas to keep them warm and comforted during the cold winters. The organization first started in California, followed by the East Coast. We are growing steadily in the US, and have donated blankets to a few worthy causes. We now have people making blankets in California, New Jersey, New York, Virginia, Alabama, Maryland, Washington DC, Maine, Connecticut, and Georgia.

Nelson Mandela statue in Washington DC Photo credit: Robert Lyle Bolton

Next year 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day in the USA plan on spreading blankets around the Nelson Mandela statue in Washington DC on Nelson Mandela Day. In 2009 The United Nations declared July 18th as an international day of service in honor of Nelson Mandela. Mandela then called on the world to give 67 minutes of their time in service to their communities on that day. Nelson Mandela gave 67 years of his life in service to his country. Stitch by Stitch, people from all over the world are making each day a Nelson Mandela Day. #MandelaDay #Time2Serve

Join us as we set our own record in Washington DC in July 2016! We have goals of 670 blankets in 2016 and 6,700 in 2017!

Blanket sizes are:Baby Size: 40×50″ Twin Size: 50×70″ Single Square: 10×10″

67-blanket---red-photo1Join our Facebook group pages:

67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela (USA – East Coast)
67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela (USA – California)

Contact information

Baltimore/DC: Veronica Buzby
California: Morag Tritt
Pennsylvania: Carol Fenton
Connecticut: Tracy Reynolds

4 thoughts on “67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day

  1. Ginger Elliott

    I would like join the project. How? I knit crochet and quilt. Where do I send the finished projects?

    • redheart Post author

      Hi Ginger, Thank you for your question! Please contact one of the Facebook groups or coordinators listed at the end of the blog post for more information on how to become involved.

  2. Carin

    Is there a Delaware group or do we contact the nearest one?

    • redheart Post author

      Dear Carin, Thank you for your question. The only groups we know about are the ones listed in the blog post, so the one closest to you is probably the Baltimore/DC group, with the contact of Veronica Buzby. We suggest contacting her and seeing if she knows of any groups closer to you and how you can best participate if you’re interested.

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