Memorial Service for Nelson Mandela 10/12/13

mandela memorial


Today a memorial service was held for Nelson Mandela in the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg. The service saw tens of thousands of people turning out in celebration of the life of the former first black president of South Africa who died last Thursday (5/12/13) at the age of 95 years old. Those in attendance included many political figures such as US President Barack Obama, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore. However Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore was not the only Irish representative there as U2’s frontman Bono was also spotted in the crowd along with a host of other high profile famous faces all wishing to pay tribute to the legendary figure.

Below is a link to the BBC website which provides an excellent collection of pictures from the memorial service highlighting just how many hearts and minds the thoughts, action and wisdom of Nelson Mandela touched during his lifetime.

Below are video clips showing US President Barack Obama and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon speaking at the memorial cermony.


The funeral of Nelson Mandela will take place on Sunday 15th of December 2013.


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nelson mandela death


Rest in Peace.


Leadership: Who inspires you?

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The main stream of my Master Degree is Mentoring and Leadership. My journey into the world of Mentoring and Leadership within the context of second level education began on Thursday the 19th of September as we engaged in what was somewhat of a ‘getting to know you and the person beside you’ kind of lecture even the majority of the class already knew each other from the previous year! We left this lecture with the task of identifying someone whom we admire and acknowledge to be a leader. We were asked to identify who this person was, the reasons why we believe them to be a good leader and the leadership characteristics they display.

The leader I have chosen for this task is Michelle Obama. Michelle Obama? Surely you mean her husband Barack? No, really; Michelle Obama.

It appears upon research that Michelle Obama displayed leadership qualities long before her family found themselves living in the White House. After completing her Law studies she sought to develop initiatives to build a connection between the youth and the community of Chicago during the 1990s. Once settled into her new surroundings of Presidential accommodation Michelle decided not to simply accept the title of First Lady and stand smiling aimlessly within the shadow of her husband’s political and global power. Instead, she chose to embrace her title of First Lady and use it as an opportunity to put her already well established leadership qualities to good use. Two examples of this are the ‘Let’s Move’ campaign against childhood obesity and ‘Joining Forces’ which aimed to provide support, opportunity and recognition to those and their families who served within the military of the United States of America.


Michelle Obama embodies so many of the characteristics of a good leader that it seems difficult to choose just three to sum her up. However upon reflection I would say she is committed, passionate with excellent delegation skills.

Although it might sound strange to choose Michelle rather than Barack Obama as a leader; I think she is someone we can relate to within our current role as teachers. Although we may not be the principal of our schools (not yet in some cases!) there is no reason why we cannot in front of rather than behind the shadow of the principal to successfully pass on the fruits of our own leadership skills to our students.  🙂

If you want to discover the leadership qualities you already have buried inside you these links might help. 🙂

Michelle Obama information: