Did you know?
The International Children's Peace Prize was awarded to Nkosi Johnson after he died at the age of 12.
There is no shortage of humanitarian heroes in South Africa. When one looks at the country's history and its people, it is fascinating to delve into the lives of those who changed the political and social landscape through peace, understanding and patience.
Nkosi Johnson, FW de Klerk, Nelson Mandela and Reverend Frank Chicane are just some of the great South African humanitarian icons who are celebrated across the globe for their courage.
Nkosi Johnson died of HIV/AIDS when he was just 12 years old, but his petite frame gave a voice to the destructive nature of the diease. Nelson Mandela, himself a revered humanitarian hero for many across the globe, referred to this little boy as ‘an icon for the struggle of life' as he touched the hearts of millions worldwide.
Mandela, affectionately know as Madiba, created a country for all South Africans by focusing on the future and forgiving the transgressions of the past. Then there is the celebrated Reverend Frank Chicane, whose spirit helped to build the many bridges to reconciliation in South Africa.
Another great spirit who swore to only speak the truth, Mahatma Gandhi, supported the Indian community in South Africa by peacefully insisting on voting rights for them. And let us not forget the ever-cheerful Archbishop Desmond Tutu, or Albert Luthuli, who was the first African to win the Nobel Peace Prize.
There are many national monuments and museums honouring South Africa's humanitarian figures, but the best way to preserve their legacy is to keep their stories of struggle and victory alive, and to be inspired by their determination and hope.
And to never forget that every South African who came through the difficult past and who builds towards a better future for all is a hero, and should not remain unsung.