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The Library at the Institute of International Relations: Library Events

A guide to the collections and services of the Library at the Institute of International Relations.

IIR Library Backpack Drive

IIR Library Backpack Drive commemorates the Nelson Mandela International Day

Every year on the 18th July – the day Nelson Mandela was born - there is a global call to devote 67 minutes of time to helping others as a way to mark Nelson Mandela International Day. These sixty-seven minutes represent the 67 years that Nelson Mandela has fought for social justice. We are inspired to join this call, and would like you to join with us.

Every year at this time, the parents of school children have or are about to receive school lists and will be engaged in the business of buying books and school supplies. In September, students will be starting a new school term full of hope and hopefully equipped with new shoes and new books. At the IIR Library, with your help, we would like to donate 67 new school bags to these parents and their children as our contribution to the global call within our local context.

The IIR Library will be partnering with the Project for Educational Excellence, a non-profit company passioned by educators within the public service. They provide families with backpacks and stationery in preparation for the rigors of the new school term. The group has already identified a number of students at the primary and secondary school level who belong to low-income families and face trying circumstances. The have told us that the students are capable but their progress is stymied by their circumstances and lack of resources.

Today, we invite you to join with us, in commemorating the Nelson Mandela International Day and ask you to donate a new backpack to our charity bin. The contents of the bin will be distributed to the parents of these students. Nelson Mandela said that “education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world” and closer to home, Eric Williams said that “the future for our nation lies in our children's book bags…” and we say, that the words and actions of these powerful thinkers may change the future of one powerful thinker, so join with us!

The backpack drive kicks off today and ends on the 31 July. Every donation counts.

We are asking your office, family or your unit to get involved and donate a backpack to the effort.

Please call 662 2002 ext. 83245 or 82291 and ask for Tamara Brathwaite for more information or email



bags collected

deadline 31/07/13