UN International Days

by Vivien Devenyi

Girls, how did you spend the special day dedicated to you once every year on the 11th October? Actually, did you even know you had one?

Source: http://awwproject.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/2013-10-11_int-day-of-the-girl5.jpg

United Nations devote about 140 days of the year to various cause-worthy ideas related to human rights and there are some with different thoughts, for example ”World Tourism Day” on the 27th of September or “World Book and Copyright Day” on the 23rd of April. What to make out of this? International Day of the Girl Child is no joke. Every single girl, even in developed and economically stable countries, is vulnerable to violence, sexual harassment, intolerance and discrimination. Of course, the democratic political system is the most preferred. Women born into it are properly respected and have free educational rights. Opposed to India for example, where very young age marriage is still looked upon as normal and if that’s not the case then girls work in the household. In addition to that, only a very low percentage of girls get to continue to secondary education. Anouradha Bakshi, of the Indian education charity Project “Why” says:

“Girls are considered second-class citizens. They carry your bag to school for you. They get your dinner. The sexist attitude is ingrained in the way one is brought up here. When I had my second child, and she happened to be a girl, my in-laws, who are very well-educated people, were not very happy about it.”

Most of UN’s “international observance days” were made official because of honorable purposes. Others, such as language days, television day, toilet day, poetry day, are indeed interesting, but don’t have the exactly same deep meaning as cancer day or Holocaust commemoration day.

Keep in mind that there are not only UN observance days but also weeks, years and even decades which are dedicated to certain causes. The next one is the Disarmament Week starting on the 24th of October. And remember, these aren’t just days in the calendar but a call to make the world a better place.

Other recent and upcoming UN international days:

10 October- World Mental Health Day

16 October- World Food Day

17 October- International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

24 October- United Nations Day

14 November- World Diabetes Day

16 November- International Day for Tolerance

19 November- World Toilet Day

20 November- Universal Children’s Day

20 November- Africa Industrialization Day

21 November- World Philosophy Day

21 November- World Television Day

25 November- International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

29 November- International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People


For full list visit:


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