Mandela Day Service Grants (MDSG)

2019 Fellowship Alumna Jennifer Batamuliza leads a coding workshop for girls in Rwanda during her MDSG project.

Mandela Day Service Grants provide small grants for Fellowship Alumni to implement short-term volunteer-driven campaigns that contribute to longer-term projects that improve livelihoods. All Mandela Washington Fellowship Alumni are invited to apply for the Mandela Day Service Grant.  The application will consist of a project proposal, including an overview of project goals and objectives, target audience, budget, timeline, work plan, and Alumni Collaborator (if applicable). 

Mandela International Day of Service is officially on July 18; however, the Nelson Mandela Foundation, the custodian of his legacy, has advocated for “Making Every Day a Mandela Day” to encourage ongoing volunteerism throughout the year.  The new Mandela Day Service Grant will support community service and volunteer projects where Alumni design, implement, and actively engage in short-term volunteer-driven community campaigns.  Through the grant, up to six Mandela Washington Fellowship Alumni (or Alumni teams) will receive up to $1,000 each to implement a short-term community service or volunteer project in onor of Mandela Day.

The Mandela Day Service Grant funds short-term service projects that the Fellowship believes will contribute to sustainable community development.  Selected grantees will implement their short-term projects from April to May and will report on all project activities, including recording videos of their projects and documenting impact, in June. Following report and video submissions, grantees will refine videos to showcase at the 2024 Mandela Washington Fellowship Summit and to celebrate Mandela Day 2024. The 2024 Mandela Day Service Grant Application is open January 8 through January 29, 2024.