The First Lady takes an official visit to South Africa with her daughters this week.

Charli Penn
Jun, 19, 2011

Michelle Obama will begin her official visit to South Africa on Monday. The mission of the trip is to focus on youth leadership, with her first stop in Johannesburg.

The White House has said the primary goal of the week-long trip is to improve relations between the U.S. and South Africa. The First Lady is bringing daughters Sasha and Malia along, as well as her mother, Marian Robinson, and niece and nephew Leslie and Avery Robinson. The President will not attend.

Mrs. Obama aims to encourage more community involvement among youth in other countries, and has chosen South Africa to launch her mission -- where two out of three residents are under 30. While there, she will promote youth education and further her health and wellness initiatives.

On Tuesday, Mrs. Obama will kick-off official visits in Pretoria, the South African capital, with a meeting with one of President Jacob Zuma’s three wives at his home, reports The Grio. The First Lady will then speak before a group of female youth leaders from sub-Saharan South Africa during an appearance at a U.S. sponsored forum on Wednesday.

While in South Africa, the First Lady plans to pay tribute to the legacy of Nelson Mandela through a tour of the Nelson Mandela Foundation and the Apartheid Museum, a visit to his old prison cell, and a meeting with his wife, Graca Machel.

Visits to Cape Town and Botswana are also on the trip’s itinerary. Mrs. Obama and her family plan to return to the U.S. on Sunday, June 26th.

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