Nelson Mandela International Day JAX

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Khalil Osiris, House of Mandela, Jacksonville University and Operation New Hope join to celebrate freedom and our power to change the world.

These celebrations will all be attended by Dr. Makaziwe Mandela, eldest daughter of Nelson Mandela, and her daughter Tukwini Mandela.

Inspired by Nelson Mandela’s commitment to freedom and social justice, Khalil Osiris of Reflecting Freedom has partnered with House of Mandela, Jacksonville University and Operation New Hope in organizing the first annual Nelson Mandela International Day (JAX) to be celebrated in Jacksonville, Florida, July 17th-19th. These celebrations will all be attended by Dr. Makaziwe Mandela, eldest daughter of Nelson Mandela, and her daughter Tukwini Mandela. Of all the cities in the world, Dr. Mandela selected Jacksonville as the place to celebrate what would be her father's 101st birthday.

Commemorated each year on July 18th, Mandela’s birthday, Nelson Mandela International Day was officially declared by the United Nations in November 2009. The day serves as a global call to action: each individual has the power to transform the world, the ability to make an impact.

Dr. Makaziwe Mandela is a scholar and tireless advocate for human rights and social justice. Her visit to Jacksonville to support the Nelson Mandela International Day event is because of her longstanding friendship with Khalil Osiris and her high regard for the outstanding work Kevin Gay and Operation New Hope are doing with formerly incarcerated citizens and their families.

Celebrations include:

July 17
KICKOFF TO FREEDOM GALA: The fundraising and recognition gala will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. at the East Club, 1 TIAA Bank Field Drive in Jacksonville. Four local “change makers” will receive House of Mandela Reflecting Freedom Awards. Fundraising proceeds from the event will benefit Operation New Hope.

July 18
2019 PRESIDENTIAL GLOBAL CITIZEN AWARD: Dr. Mandela will be honored with Jacksonville University’s Global Citizen Award in recognition of her important work on inclusion and equality and her fight for global human rights. The award ceremony is in Terry Concert Hall. It is free and open to the public but registration is required and each person will need a ticket to get in. Then, Dr. Mandela will attend an intimate luncheon at JU’s River House featuring a Q&A with her. Ticket purchases for the luncheon support the charter formation of the Mandela Family Scholarship Endowment at Jacksonville University. Find out more at

#67ACTJAX – Nelson Mandela fought for social justice for 67 years and as part of these celebrations we are challenging Jacksonville citizens to participate in service to your community for 67 minutes, on July 18th and commemorate your service with #67ACTJAX on social media.

The public is also invited to participate in #67ACTJAX through the following:

  • Dr. Mandela and Tukwini Mandela will attend a #67ACTJAX event at Jacksonville University on July 18, 2019 from 5:30pm-6:30pm. Reflecting Freedom is partnering with NFL Alumni Aaron Beasley and Brent Reece, and Founder of 514 Esports, Greg Zinone, to host the event . The NFL Alumni is the oldest, most well-known and well-respected retired player organization in professional sports. This event will be an interactive presentation aimed at serving underprivileged youth by providing them with exposure to career opportunities through e-gaming. The event is free and open to the public (registration required to attend the event). To register for this event visit:

Find out more about and

  • At Operation New Hope, we believe that we are all better than our worst mistake, worst day, or worst decision. Let incarcerated citizens returning to Jacksonville know that second chances matter by writing a Message of Hope. We will mail your heartfelt note of encouragement to an incarcerated individual who is soon to be released to show that we welcome them home to the City of Second Chances. Visit –

July 19
LAUNCH CEREMONY: hosted by Compassionate St. Augustine , a self-organizing, grassroots group of residents who affirm the charter for compassion and all efforts to enliven the Golden Rule. The ceremony will launch the future site of Operation New Hope’s [Ready4Work] office. Open to the public, it takes place on Friday, July 19th at 4:30 p.m. at 83 Washington St.

As part of the ceremony, Dr. Makaziwe Mandela and Tukwini Mandela will be welcomed to the Ancient City and St. Johns County by the City of St. Augustine and partners. Mama Blue will be performing.

ART EXHIBTION: Open by invitation only on July 19, 2019 at the Lightner Museum in St. Augustine, Florida, “The Struggle Series” is a collaboration between Nelson Mandela and invited contemporary artists, chosen from around the world. Housed in the historic Alcazar hotel, the museum is home to one of the best collections of fine and decorative 19th century art in the country.

About Khalil Osiris
Khalil Osiris is an international speaker on restorative justice and transformational leadership. An author, educator and activist, he spent 20 years of his life in prison and while there earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Boston University. He transformed his life and emerged from prison with a deep understanding of how to use personal crisis and challenges as opportunities for self-improvement.

About Jacksonville University
Named an "America's Best College" in the south for more than 10 consecutive years by U.S. News & World Report, Jacksonville University is a premier private institution in northeast Florida. Founded in 1934, the University offers more than 100 majors, minors, and programs, including in-demand degrees in Nursing, Business, Biology and Marine Science, Engineering, Finance, as well as those in the more contemporary and specialized fields of Aviation, Communication Sciences and Disorders, Film, Animation, and Sport Business.

About Operation New Hope
Operation New Hope is a non-profit organization working to build a stronger community by creating opportunities to realize second chances and reduce recidivism. In 2003, President George W. Bush selected Operation New Hope as the pilot site for the Ready4Work® program. Applauded by President Bill Clinton in his book, “Giving,” praised by President Barack Obama, and former U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao; Ready4Work is recognized as one of the nation’s best re-entry programs.

About House of Mandela
The House of Mandela (HOM) is the organization through which the proud descendants of the late Nelson Mandela preserve the history and legacy of the family name, and continue his work towards unity and compassion across global races, religions, and genders. HOM seeks to improve the lives of Africa’s poverty stricken communities and Globally advocate for social issues that affect African communities through funding development organizations and charities.

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