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By Emmanuelle Saliba, Euronews

On what would have been Nelson Mandela's 97th birthday, people around the world Saturday are honoring the legendary South African leader's legacy with charitable acts.

Nelson Mandela International Day, or Mandela Day, was adopted by the United Nations in 2009, and asks those who want to follow in his footsteps to "Take Action. Inspire Change." The Nelson Mandela Foundation encourages people to devote 67 minutes to helping others — one minute of charitable work for every year Mandela devoted to humanitarian service.

He died in 2013 at the age of 95.

A woman paints a shack with white fire retardant paint as a contribution to International Nelson Mandela day celebrating former South African president Mandela birthday in the township of Nomzamo, South Africa on July 18, 2015.Schalk van Zuydam / AP

For her part, Mandela's ex-wife, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, held a lunch for elderly and poorer women at the Mandela family restaurant near the family’s home in Soweto and handed out blankets, according to The Associated Press. At the University of Johannesburg, his widow, Graca Machel, gave out food parcels.

A young girl Thando Masuku, kisses a mural showing former South African president Nelson Mandela's face at Katlehong township on Mandela Day, which is celebrated on July 18th every year.Themba Hadebe / AP

The U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon announced in a statement that it will be granting the first-ever Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela Prize — the award will be presented every five years to two individuals who build on Mandela’s legacy.

Others are also honoring the beloved statesman on social media using the hashtag #MandelaDay and #Time2Serve: