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Health Events Calendar

2024 Australian health events.


4 January – World Braille Day

World Braille Day, celebrated since 2019, is observed to raise awareness of the importance of Braille as a means of communication in the full realization of the human rights for blind and partially sighted people.

Braille is a tactile representation of alphabetic and numerical symbols using six dots to represent each letter and number, and even musical, mathematical and scientific symbols. Braille (named after its inventor in 19th century France, Louis Braille) is used by blind and partially sighted people to read the same books and periodicals as those printed in a visual font.

24 January – International Day of Education

The United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 24 January as International Day of Education, in celebration of the role of education for peace and development.

The right to education is enshrined in article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The declaration calls for free and compulsory elementary education. The Convention on the Rights of the Child, adopted in 1989, goes further to stipulate that countries shall make higher education accessible to all.

26 January – International Day of Clean Energy

The science is clear: to limit climate change, we need to end our reliance on fossil fuels and invest in alternative sources of energy that are clean, accessible, affordable, sustainable, and reliable.

Renewable energy sources – which are available in abundance all around us, provided by the sun, wind, water, waste, and heat from the Earth – are replenished by nature and emit little to no greenhouse gases or pollutants into the air.

The International Day of Clean Energy on January 26 is a call to raise awareness and mobilize action for a just and inclusive transition to clean energy for the benefit of people and the planet.

28 January – World Leprosy Day

In 2024, World Leprosy Day is Sunday 28 January. World Leprosy Day always takes place on the last Sunday of January.

This date was chosen by French humanitarian, Raoul Follereau as a tribute to the life of Mahatma Gandhi, who did much work with persons affected by leprosy and died at the end of January in 1948.

We celebrate World Leprosy Day to raise awareness of a disease that many people think does not exist anymore.
Each year there are 200,000 people diagnosed with leprosy and there are millions who are living with the damaging consequences of delayed leprosy treatment.

World Leprosy Day is an opportunity to celebrate the lives of those affected, raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of the disease, and tackle the stigma that too often surrounds leprosy. It is also an opportunity to raise money so that we can be the generation that ends leprosy transmission.

30 January – World Neglected Tropical Diseases Day

On 31 May 2021, the World Health Assembly (WHA) recognized 30 January as World Neglected Tropical Disease (NTD) Day through decision WHA74(18). This decision formalized 30 January as a day to create better awareness on the devastating impact of NTDs on the poorest populations around the world.

The day is also an opportunity to call on everyone to support the growing momentum for the control, elimination and eradication of these diseases. Global NTD partners had marked the celebration in January 2021 by organizing various virtual events and also by lighting up landmark monuments and buildings.


1 February to 28 February – Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

Held each year in February to educate Australians on ovarian cancer, and raise awareness by sharing the stories of real women affected by the disease.

1 February to 29 February – REDFEB

This coming February, we invite you to wear RED for someone close to your heart.

Heart disease is still Australia’s leading cause of death affecting families and communities around the country. Can you help us fund much needed life-saving breakthroughs to help us keep families together for longer?

Getting involved is as simple as wearing red and donating. #wearredanddonate

Help us make breakthroughs happen and reduce the devastation heart disease causes families and communities.

1 February to 29 February – febfast

What will you say goodbye to this febfast?

This February, you get to choose how you’ll change young people’s lives. Give up a vice of your choice for the whole month, feel the health benefits and raise funds for YSAS’ drug and alcohol programs.

The money you raise will help fund treatment services, outreach and rehabilitation programs so more young people can overcome addiction. Help fund supported housing, education and training, so all young Australians have the opportunity of a better future.

2 February – World Wetlands Day

It is urgent that we raise national and global awareness about wetlands in order to reverse their rapid loss and encourage actions to conserve and restore them. World Wetlands Day is the ideal time to increase people’s understanding of these critically important ecosystems.

“Revive and restore degraded wetlands” is the theme for 2023 highlighting the importance of wetlands’ restoration, since well-restored wetlands can provide many of the services performed by the original natural wetland.

An urgent call to take action and to invest financial, human and political capital is this year’s appeal to save the world’s wetlands from disappearing altogether — and to restore those we have already lost.

4 February – World Cancer Day

World Cancer Day is a chance to raise our collective voices in the name of improving general knowledge around cancer and dismissing misconceptions about the disease.

4 February to 10 February – Healthy Lunchbox Week

Healthy Lunchbox Week is an initiative of Nutrition Australia that aims to inspire Australian families to create healthy and enjoyable lunchboxes.

Did you know children consume around 30% of their daily food intake at school? Most of this comes from the contents of their lunchbox. What children eat during their day at school plays a crucial role in their learning and development.

Healthy Lunchbox Week helps families prepare healthy lunchboxes by:
inspiring healthy lunchbox ideas and recipes 
informing a healthy lunchbox balance across core food groups
awareness of lunchbox food hygiene and safety.

4 February to 10 February – Feeding Tube Awareness Week

With your support we can increase awareness and understanding in the community by raising some of the challenges faced and highlighting the day-to-day impact of tube feeding on individuals, carers and families.

Feeding Tube Awareness Week (FTAW) aims to raise awareness about tube feeding and unite the community.

6 February – International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation

The International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation, on 6 February each year, is a time to make the world aware of female genital mutilation (FGM). According to data from the World Health Organisation (WHO), an estimated 120 to 140 million women have been subject to this harmful practice and 3 million girls continue to be at risk each year. FGM is recognised internationally as a violation of human rights.

6 February – Safer Internet Day

Safer Internet DayExternal link is a global initiative to raise awareness of online safety issues.
The eSafety Commissioner leads the initiative in Australia. We educate people about online safety risks, like online abuse, how to be safe online and where to go for help.

This Safer Internet Day we’re encouraging you to take three simple actions when approaching online safety: Connect. Reflect. Protect.  

Connect safely by keeping apps and devices secure and reviewing your privacy settings regularly. 

Reflect on how your actions online may affect others or your safety. 

Protect yourself and others by visiting eSafety.gov.au to find out how to stay safe online and report online abuse.

By doing these things and sharing the Connect. Reflect. Protect message, we can work towards making every day a Safer Internet Day. 

10 February – World Pulses Day

Recognizing their value, on 20 December 2013, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution (A/RES/68/231) proclaiming 2016 as the International Year of Pulses (IYP). The celebration of the year, led by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), increased the public awareness of the nutritional and environmental benefits of pulses as part of sustainable food production.

Building on the success of the International Year of Pulses and recognizing their potential to further achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, with particular relevance to Sustainable Development Goals 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 12, 13 and 15, Burkina Faso proposed the observance of World Pulses Day.

In 2019, the General Assembly proclaimed 10 February as the World Pulses Day (resolution A/RES/73/251).

11 February – International Day of Women and Girls in Science

The United Nations have proclaimed February 11 the International Day of Women and Girls in Science aiming to ensure full and equal access to and participation in science for women and girls.

11 February to 17 February – Heart Failure Awareness Week

Our vision is to significantly reduce the burden of heart failure and provide a platform for collaboration, education, innovation, research, and advocacy to improve and expand care.

12 February – International Day for the Prevention of Violent Extremism as and when Conducive to Terrorism

In its resolution 77/243, the General Assembly decided to declare 12 February the International Day for the Prevention of Violent Extremism as and when Conducive to Terrorism, in order to raise awareness of the threats linked to violent extremism, as and when conducive to terrorism, and to enhance international cooperation in this regard.

13 February – World Radio Day

On World Radio Day 2023, UNESCO highlights independent radio as a pillar for conflict prevention and peacebuilding.

An armed conflict between countries or groups within a country may also translate into a conflict of media narratives. The narrative can either increase tensions or maintain conditions for peace. 

In reporting and informing the general public, radio stations shape public opinion and frame a narrative that can influence domestic and international situations and decision-making processes.

Increasing radio’s journalistic standards and capacity should be considered as an investment in peace.

13 February – Anniversary of the National Apology to the Stolen Generations

February 13 each year marks the anniversary of the National Apology to the Stolen Generations, who suffered trauma because of past government policies of forced child removal.

Many of these removals occurred as the result of laws and policies aimed at assimilating the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population into the predominately white community.

Stolen Generations survivors are some of Australia’s most vulnerable people and many have kept their stories and experiences secret for many years, even decades.

Through hearing the resilient stories of Stolen Generations survivors there is now a willingness for Australians to join in on the healing journey. To be part of solutions into the future. This is the spirit of the anniversary.

14 February – V-DAY

V-Day is a global activist movement to end violence against all women, girls and the earth.

Growing from a singular play to a vast global movement of survivors, artists and activists, V-Day works at the intersection of art and activism to shatter taboos, create space for women and the most marginalized, and initiate community led culture and system change. V-Day is a movement of everyday grassroots leaders demanding change for their communities.

14 February – National Condom Day

Sharing the date with Valentines Day, National Condom Day is an opportunity to celebrate safer sex and relationships. At SHQ we believe everyone has the right to learn about sexual health so that we can have healthy relationships, and safe, consensual, and pleasurable sex. 

Taking part in our National Condom Day campaign provides community with an opportunity to learn about condoms and safer sex, and to discuss and ask questions. Displaying posters, handing out condoms and stickers is a great way to open these discussions. 

20 February – World Day of Social Justice

The General Assembly recognizes that social development and social justice are indispensable for the achievement and maintenance of peace and security within and among nations and that, in turn, social development and social justice cannot be attained in the absence of peace and security, or in the absence of respect for all human rights and fundamental freedoms.

On 26 November 2007, the General Assembly declared that, starting from the sixty-third session of the General Assembly, 20 February will be celebrated annually as the World Day of Social Justice.

21 February – International Mother Language Day

International Mother Language Day recognizes that languages and multilingualism can advance inclusion, and the Sustainable Development Goals’ focus on leaving no one behind. 

UNESCO encourages and promotes multilingual education based on mother tongue or first language. It is a type of education that begins in the language that the learner masters most and then gradually introduces other languages.

This approach enables learners whose mother tongue is different from the language of instruction to bridge the gap between home and school, to discover the school environment in a familiar language, and thus, learn better.

28 February – Summer’s Day

On this day each year stop and remember all the children who lost their lives as a result of an unintentional injury, and acknowledge those children and families living with the consequences of preventable injury.

28 February – Teal Ribbon Giving Day

Teal is the colour that represents ovarian cancer. You can show your support for people affected by the disease by wearing an official Ovarian Cancer Australia Teal Ribbon in the lead up to February 28.

29 February – Rare Disease Day

Rare Disease Day is the globally-coordinated movement on rare diseases, working towards equity in social opportunity, healthcare, and access to diagnosis and therapies for people living with a rare disease.


1 March – Zero Discrimination Day

Zero Discrimination Day highlights how people can become informed about and promote inclusion, compassion, peace and, above all, a movement for change. Zero Discrimination Day is helping to create a global movement of solidarity to end all forms of discrimination.

1 March to 31 March – Endometriosis Awareness Month

Australia got its glow on again in March 2024! Endo Enlightened encourages landmarks and businesses to dress themselves in a bright yellow light as a demonstration of hope and support for EndoWarriors and to raise awareness of the disease that affects 1 in 7 women, girls, and those assigned female at birth*.

1 March to 31 March – World’s Greatest Shave

Blood cancer is Australia’s hidden cancer crisis. There are 140,000 families facing blood cancer right now. And it takes the lives of 16 Australians every day.

Every year, thousands of Australians step up to Shave, Cut, or Colour their hair. It’s the ultimate act of support for people facing blood cancer.

Every dollar you raise will help provide families with practical and emotional support to get them through the many challenges that blood cancer can bring. And you’ll power Australia’s brightest research minds, bringing us closer to our goal of zero lives lost to blood cancer by 2035.

Shave. Cut. Colour.  Join the World’s Greatest Shave community and make a life-changing difference today.

1 March to 31 March – The March Charge

Walk or run this March for people impacted by cancer.

Choose your personal KM goal and Charge either solo, with your friends, family, or colleagues together and do it as a team – it’s up to you.

Fundraise for Cancer Council’s life-saving cancer research and feel the Charge!

1 March to 31 March – March into Yellow

March into Yellow is a fun and easy way to open up a conversation about the disease and an opportunity for our community to show support.

March into Yellow encourages our broader community to show their support for the invisible illness by adorning themselves in the colour yellow. It is also a fun way to raise funds for Endometriosis Australia who support endometriosis education and research.

1 March to 31 March – Make March Purple

This year, Epilepsy Action Australia is part of the Make March Purple movement in support of the 250,000 Australians living with epilepsy.

Make March Purple is a national campaign supported by epilepsy organisations across Australia. It ensures epilepsy is in the spotlight for longer than one day alone, encouraging Australians to have conversations throughout March to break the stigma often associated with the condition. Every 33 minutes, someone’s life is turned upside down by epilepsy. This week alone, 305 Australians will be diagnosed with epilepsy.

For many, epilepsy can deeply affect the personal lives, employment, education, and wellbeing of the person and their family. Make March Purple for Epilepsy is an effort to raise awareness and much-needed funds. Will you help us turn things around for Epilepsy?

Whether it be through joining a community fundraiser, hosting your own event, creating an online fundraiser, purchasing merchandise, or encouraging your school or community organisation to get involved, every little bit counts.

3 March – World Hearing Day

World Hearing Day in Australia is held on 3 March each year to raise awareness of how to prevent deafness and hearing loss, and to promote better ear protection and health across the world.

3 March – World Wildlife Day

World Wildlife Day (WWD) is an opportunity to celebrate the many beautiful and varied forms of wild fauna and flora and to raise awareness of the multitude of benefits that their conservation provides to people. At the same time, the Day reminds us of the urgent need to step up the fight against wildlife crime and human-induced reduction of species, which have wide-ranging economic, environmental and social impacts. 

World Wildlife Day is on March 3 every year to raise awareness of endangered animals and plants, and ways to fight against wildlife crime.

4 March – World Obesity Day

Obesity is a complex interaction of different factors, for different people, in different countries and cultures. One universal strategy for every person is never going to be the solution. That’s why this year’s World Obesity Day is opening up a wider conversation. 

We want to leverage the power of World Obesity Day to start cross-cutting conversations. Looking at health, youth and the world around us to see how we can address obesity together. This World Obesity Day, let’s share knowledge, advocate together, and see obesity from a different perspective.

8 March – International Women’s Day

Every year, International Women’s Day (IWD) is celebrated around the world on the 8th of March.

International Women’s Day is celebrated in many countries around the world. It is a day when all women are recognised for their achievements.

9 March – World Kidney Day

World Kidney Day aims to raise awareness of the importance of our kidneys to our overall health and to reduce the frequency and impact of kidney disease and its associated health problems worldwide.

9 March – The National Day of Women Living with HIV

The National Day of Women Living with HIV occurs annually on 9 March, as an opportunity to celebrate the lives of women living with HIV. This year, NAPWHA’s National Network of Women Living with HIV chose the theme ‘Challenge HIV Stigma’.

In the ongoing battle to end HIV stigma, Australia’s National Network of Women Living with HIV is showcasing to all Australians how women living with HIV challenge HIV-related stigma. The aim of the campaign is to empower women living with HIV who have experienced stigma by giving them a platform to share their stories, and educate people about what HIV stigma looks like.

10 March to 16 March – World Glaucoma Week

World Glaucoma Week is a unique initiative that puts a spotlight on glaucoma as the leading cause of preventable irreversible blindness worldwide. The prompt diagnosis and treatment of glaucoma can prevent needless vision impairment, however, so many are unaware they have the disease or may not have access to much-needed care.

14 March – International School Meals Day

International School Meals Day (ISMD) is a unique campaign with the aim of raising awareness of good nutrition for all children regardless of their circumstances.

Since December 2010, the UK and USA have been sharing examples of policy and practices in promoting healthy eating in schools. With similar challenges and successes on both sides of the Atlantic, both wanted to find a way to raise awareness of the importance of good nutrition amongst children and foster healthy eating habits both at home and at school – and so, International School Meals Day emerged.

Since its launch in 2013, it has brought together teachers and students, policy makers, school cooks, chefs, food and nutrition professionals, schools and communities, charities, businesses and health professionals from around the world to talk about the importance of school meals and its impact on wellbeing and education.

14 March – World Kidney Day

On March 14, 2024, we invite everyone to celebrate World Kidney Day and advance kidney health education. Therefore, the #ShowYourKidneys is a token to remind World Kidney Day supporters of the primary function of their kidneys and their location in their bodies.

15 March – World Sleep Day

World Sleep Day delegates and sleep health advocates across the world will take action in their local communities, clinics, and countries to raise awareness of sleep health. Join us!

17 March to 24 March – Multiple Birth Awareness Week

Multiple Birth Awareness Week (MBAW) is a national campaign to raise awareness around, and draw attention to, the unique realities for multiple birth families in Australia – and how advocacy, positive education and engaged communities can contribute to enabling positive health outcomes for families with multiples.

18 March to 24 March – Neurodiversity Celebration Week

Neurodiversity Celebration Week is a worldwide initiative that challenges stereotypes and misconceptions about neurological differences. It aims to transform how neurodivergent individuals are perceived and supported by providing schools, universities, and organisations with the opportunity to recognise the many talents and advantages of being neurodivergent, while creating more inclusive and equitable cultures that celebrate differences and empower every individual.

18 March to 19 April – A Taste of Harmony

A Taste of Harmony is an opportunity to celebrate your workplace’s cultural diversity. It is free to participate and easy to organise. Join over 8,000 other workplaces, big and small, city or remote who will all be taking part in recognising and celebrating their cultural diversity.

18 March to 24 March – Harmony Week

Harmony Week is the celebration that recognises our diversity and brings together Australians from all different backgrounds.

It’s about inclusiveness, respect and a sense of belonging for everyone.​

To participate, you can wear orange to show your support, or you can attend/host a Harmony Week event.

18 March to 24 March – National Advance Care Planning Week

Advance care planning involves planning for your future health care. It enables you to make some decisions now about the health care you would or would not like to receive if you were to become seriously ill and unable to communicate your preferences or make treatment decisions.

Advance care planning gives you the opportunity to think about, discuss and record your preferences for the type of care you would like to receive and the outcomes you would consider acceptable. Advance care planning helps to ensure your loved ones and health providers know what matters most to you and respect your treatment preferences.

Between 18 to 24 March 2024, the theme ‘Share what matters most’, will take centre stage across Australia. Advance Care Planning Australia are developing a nationwide campaign and program of events.

19 March – World Social Work Day

The day is an opportunity for social workers and others in the social service sector to celebrate their achievements as well as to raise awareness and support for the important role that social workers play in the lives of children, families and communities facing adversity.

20 March – International Day of Happiness

With our world facing unprecedented challenges, wellbeing matters more than ever. When we choose to take action to help others, they benefit, we benefit and we set an example of kindness that can ripple out into the world too.

20 March – World Oral Health Day

On the 20 March every year, we ask the world to unite to help reduce the burden of oral diseases, which affect individuals, health systems and economies everywhere. Its purpose: to empower people with the knowledge, tools and confidence to secure good oral health.

21 March – World Down Syndrome Day

World Down Syndrome Day (WDSD) , 21 March, is a global awareness day which has been officially observed by the United Nations since 2012. The date for WDSD being the 21st day of the 3rd month, was selected to signify the uniqueness of the triplication (trisomy) of the 21st chromosome which causes Down syndrome.

21 March – International Day for the Elimination of Racial Dscrimination

The International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination is observed annually on the day the police in Sharpeville, South Africa, opened fire and killed 69 people at a peaceful demonstration against apartheid “pass laws” in 1960.

21 March – International Day of Forests

March 21 is the United Nations’ (UN) International Day of Forests, which promotes the importance of forests and trees in our lives. The day addresses issues such as deforestation.

21 March – National Close the Gap Day

The Close the Gap campaign arose in response to Professor Tom Calma’s Social Justice Report (2005 ) which challenged governments to bring about health equality within a generation.

In Australia, Aboriginal infants die more often than non-Indigenous infants, Aboriginal people’s life expectancy is shorter, with more than double the rate of illness. For example, Australia has failed to eliminate preventable blindness and rheumatic heart disease, shameful outcomes for one of the wealthiest countries in the world.

The Steering Committee first met in March 2006. Their campaign was launched in April 2007 by patrons Catherine Freeman OAM and Ian Thorpe OAM. In 2007 the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) set measurable targets to track and assess developments in the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. These targets included achieving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health equality within a generation and halving the mortality rate gap for children under five years old within a decade.

22 March – World Water Day

World Water Day celebrates water and raises awareness of the 2.2 billion people living without access to safe water. It is about taking action to tackle the global water crisis. A core focus of World Water Day is to support the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 6: water and sanitation for all by 2030.

22 March – National Ride2School Day

National Ride2School Day is Australia’s biggest celebration of active travel and one of the best days on the school calendar. It is a day full of fun and colour where students, teachers and parents discover the joy of riding and kick-start healthy habits for the future.

24 March – World Tuberculosis Day

Each year we commemorate World TB Day to raise public awareness about the devastating health, social and economic consequences of tuberculosis (TB) and to step up efforts to end the global TB epidemic. The date marks the day in 1882 when Dr. Robert Koch announced that he had discovered the bacterium that causes TB, which opened the way towards diagnosing and curing this disease.

25 March – Earth Hour

Every year hundreds of millions of people around the world in more than 7,000 cities in over 190 countries take part by switching off for 60 minutes as a symbolic gesture of solidarity to show they care about our planet’s future.
This year, Earth Hour is at 8.30pm local time Saturday 25 March. We’re inviting all Australians to sign up to  #ShapeOurFuture and join a worldwide community of millions supporting stronger action on climate change. Individual actions can benefit our planet, while symbolically demonstrating support for a renewable future for our country, and for the world. 
You could:
– Switch to solar power.
– Switching your ride
– Or just #SwitchOff your lights for Earth Hour to show your support for greater action on climate change.

26 March – Purple Day

Purple Day is a global initiative dedicated to raising epilepsy awareness, dispelling myths, and increasing support for people living with epilepsy. Founded in 2008 by nine-year-old Cassidy Megan of Nova Scotia, Canada, the Purple Day concept was born out of Cassidy’s own struggles with epilepsy, her motivation to get people talking about the condition, and her desire to let those impacted by seizures know that they are not alone. Cassidy named the day ‘Purple Day’ after the internationally recognised colour for epilepsy, lavender.

Since that time, Purple Day has grown into a much loved and supported national awareness day with thousands of people across Australia rallying their private, academic, and corporate communities to raise much needed awareness and funds to provide services for more than 250,000 Australians currently living with epilepsy.

30 March – World Bipolar Day

For those living with bipolar disorder, WBD offers an opportunity to connect with others as well as assistance in gaining access to valuable resources and relationships that can improve their lives through treatment.

WBD’s ultimate goal is to inspire a global shift in thinking that will eliminate social stigma and promote acceptance.

We encourage you to organise, publicise, and attend local events. 

30 March – International Day of Zero Waste

The International Day of Zero Waste aims to promote sustainable consumption and production patterns, support the societal shift towards circularity and raise awareness about how zero-waste initiatives contribute to the advancement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The waste sector contributes significantly to the triple planetary crisis of climate change, biodiversity and nature loss, and pollution. Humanity generates an estimated 2.24 billion tons of municipal solid waste annually, of which only 55 per cent is managed in controlled facilities. Every year, around 931 million tons of food is lost or wasted and up to 14 million tons of plastic waste enters aquatic ecosystems.

Zero-waste initiatives can foster sound waste management and minimize and prevent waste, helping to address the triple planetary crisis, protect the environment, enhance food security and improve human health and well-being.

31 March – Trans Day of Visibility

Trans Day of Visibility is an annual international celebration of trans pride and awareness, recognising trans and gender diverse experiences and achievements!

On 31 March celebrate with gender diverse people all around Australia by sharing stories, starting conversations, and attending events.


1 April to 30 April – Parkinson’s Awareness Month

During this month, Parkinson’s Australia is promoting the importance of identifying some of the lesser-known early warning signs and symptoms of Parkinson’s.

1 April to 30 April – IBS Awareness Month

April is IBS Awareness Month. To help raise greater public awareness about IBS and to highlight what it can be like to live with a diagnosis, we’ve reached out to individuals and their families directly affected by IBS – people who have courageously and generously shared their own personal experiences with us to help others to better understand IBS.

1 April to 30 April – FND Awareness Month

Functional Neurological Disorder (FND) is a problem with the functioning of the nervous system and how the brain and body send and receive signals. Physical and/or psychological risk factors can cause functional symptoms which include a variety of physical, sensory and cognitive symptoms that have yet to be explained by a recognised disease.

Functional Neurological Disorders are considered to be multifactorial, which means many different risk factors can contribute to the development of the disorder. The symptoms are real and can cause impairment in quality of life that is similar to and in some aspects worse than other neurological conditions. 

FND occupies a grey area between psychiatry and neurology that historically has failed to gain the interest of researchers and clinicians. The prevalence and potential reversibility of functional illness have peaked new research interests. New scientific findings are influencing how patients are diagnosed, treated, and creating an overall change in attitude toward Functional Neurological Disorder patients.

2 April – World Autism Awareness Day

World Autism Awareness Day is an internationally recognized day on April 2 every year, encouraging Member States of the United Nations to take measures to raise awareness about people with autism spectrum disorder throughout the world.

5 April – International Day of Conscience

The task of constructing a culture of peace requires comprehensive educational, cultural, social and civic action, in which each person has something to learn and something to give and share. It addresses all ages and all groups; it is an open-minded global strategy with a specific purpose, namely, to make a culture of peace inseparable from culture per se and to take root in people’s hearts and minds. Peace is not only the absence of differences and conflicts. It is a positive, dynamic, participatory process linked intrinsically to democracy, justice and development for all by which differences are respected, dialogue is encouraged and conflicts are constantly transformed by non-violent means into new avenues of cooperation.

Based on this broadest and most positive meaning of peace, a culture of peace is a set of values, attitudes, traditions and customs, modes of behaviour and ways of life that reflect and are directed towards respect for life, for human beings and their rights, the rejection of violence in all its forms, the recognition of the equal rights of men and women, the recognition of the rights of everyone to freedom of expression, opinion and information, attachment to the principles of democracy, freedom, justice, development for all, tolerance, solidarity, pluralism and acceptance of differences and understanding between nations, between ethnic, religious, cultural and other groups and between individuals.

7 April – World Health Day

World Health Day is celebrated annually and each year draws attention to a specific health topic of concern to people all over the world. The date of 7 April marks the anniversary of the founding of WHO in 1948.

8 April to 14 April – Dietitians Week

Dietitians Week is an annual awareness event hosted by Dietitians Australia and supported by dietitians around the country. 

Dietitians Week highlights:  
– the many roles dietitians play
– how dietitians bring unique value to our lives 
– ways you can help spread awareness and help to raise the voice of dietitians. 

Dietitians Week raises awareness for how Accredited Practising Dietitians – the gold standard dietitian in Australia – help individuals and communities lead healthier and happier lives.

11 April – World Parkinson’s Day

Each year on April 11, MDS and our partners work to amplify awareness and understanding about Parkinson’s disease internationally.

MDS is part of a global alliance of organizations working to end Parkinson’s disease. Together every April 11, we work to mobilize the community to spark change.

14 April – World Chagas Disease Day

Chagas disease, also known as “silent or silenced disease”, affects mainly poor people without access to health care or people without a political voice.

The disease progresses slowly and often shows an asymptomatic clinical course. Without treatment, Chagas disease can lead to severe cardiac and digestive alterations and become fatal. Raising awareness of the disease is essential to improve the rates of early treatment and cure, together with the interruption of its transmission.

The World Chagas Disease Day was celebrated for the first time in 2020.

17 April – World Haemophillia Day

Every year on 17 April World Haemophilia Day is recognised worldwide to increase awareness of haemophilia, von Willebrand disease and other inherited bleeding disorders. This is a critical effort since with increased awareness comes better diagnosis and access to care for the millions who remain without treatment.
World Haemophilia Day was started in 1989 by the World Federation of Hemophilia (WFH), which chose 17 April as the day to bring the community together in honour of WFH founder Frank Schnabel’s birthday.

21 April – World Creativity and Innovation Day

There may be no universal understanding of creativity. The concept is open to interpretation from artistic expression to problem-solving in the context of economic, social and sustainable development. Therefore, the United Nations designated 21 April as World Creativity and Innovation Day to raise the awareness of the role of creativity and innovation in all aspects of human development.

22 April – International Mother Earth Day

For this International Mother Earth Day, let’s remind ourselves – more than ever – that we need a shift to a more sustainable economy that works for both people and the planet. Let’s promote harmony with nature and the Earth. Join the global movement to restore our world!

24 April to 30 April – World Immunization Week

World Immunization Week, celebrated in the last week of April, aims to highlight the collective action needed and to promote the use of vaccines to protect people of all ages against disease.

24 April – International Guide Dog Day

International Guide Dog Day is celebrated on the last Wednesday in April each year. It marks the establishment of the International Federation of Guide Dog Associations on 26th April 1989.

This day provides a chance to honor the invaluable contributions of Guide Dogs globally. It aims to increase awareness about the vital role Guide Dog services play in empowering individuals who are blind or have low vision to lead independent lives.

25 April – World Malaria Day

World Malaria Day is an occasion to highlight the need for continued investment and sustained political commitment for malaria prevention and control.

28 April – World Day for Safety and Health at Work

The annual World Day for Safety and Health at Work on 28 April promotes the prevention of occupational accidents and diseases globally.

29 April to 5 May – Heart Week

Held in the first week of May each year, Heart Week provides an opportunity for health professionals and the Australian public to start a conversation about heart health and take positive steps to reduce their risk of heart disease.

29 April to 3 May – Human Experience Week

You’re invited to join the 2024 Human Experience Week celebrations!

Held annually across NSW Health Human Experience Week highlights the important connection between the experiences of patients, their families and carers, and the experiences of our staff and volunteers.

During the week, we celebrate exceptional patient and staff experiences by inviting and sharing stories to amplify voices and inspire hope.

NSW Health is dedicated to ensuring that the people in our care, along with their families and carers, and our staff have the best possible experiences.


1 May to 31 May – Macula Month

May is Macula Month, our annual awareness campaign to help Australians understand their risk of macular diseases. When you understand your risk, and know what to do, you can take early action that could save your sight.

1 May to 31 May – Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Month

Each May is a chance for Australians to understand a little more about what it is like to live with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, collectively known as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

Many people living with these illnesses stay silent about the day-to-day issues they face but during May, we can help them speak up. 

1 May to 31 May – Neurofibromatosis (NF) Awareness Month

Neurofibromatosis (NF) Awareness Month is held each year in May to improve understanding of the signs and symptoms of NF, to share the stories of real people affected by the condition and to educate Australians on the diagnosis and treatment.

NF occurs in 1 of every 2,500 people, affecting more than 2.5 million people around the world. So why don’t more people know about it? Because there is no simple way to define NF. It’s impact can be both visible and invisible. You may barely notice you have it or it could be life-threatening.

You could lose your sight or hearing. You could have bone abnormalities and learning difficulties. You could live in chronic pain or develop cancer. Social isolation, anxiety and depression are not uncommon. There is no way to know your fate. You watch and you wait. You grieve for what you lost.

1 May to 31 May – Thyroid Awareness Month

During the month of May the Australian Thyroid Foundation is encouraging people of all ages to check their thyroids and take notice of possible symptoms.

1 May to 31 May – Miracle Month of May

Miracle Month of May is a time to highlight the work of Miracle Babies supporting premature and sick newborns, their families and the hospitals who care for them. As well as the stories of Australia’s littlest miracles.

1 May to 31 May – Mindful in May

Mindful in May is the world’s largest online mindfulness fundraising campaign.
It’s simple: we provide education, tools, and support so you can build a sustainable meditation practice to become mentally fit in one month.

Our research shows it takes only 10 mins of meditation a day to see significant positive benefits in your life. 
Feel better, and be better, while also helping improve the lives of those in urgent need of clean, safe drinking water, by making a donation to the cause this May! 

5 May – International Day of the Midwife

International Day of the Midwife is celebrated each year on 5 May. This is a chance for midwives to celebrate their profession and for all of us to recognise their work and contribution to maternal and newborn health.

5 May to 11 May – International Compost Awareness Week Australia

International Compost Awareness Week Australia (ICAW), is a week of activities, events and publicity to improve awareness of the importance of  compost, a valuable organic resource and to promote compost use, knowledge and products. We can compost to help scrap carbon pollution by avoiding landfilling organic materials and helping to build healthier soils.

ICAW Australia is an initiative of the Centre for Organic Research & Education (CORE), a not-for-profit organisation conducting year round organic research, education and awareness activities.
CORE also organises National Organic Week Australia (NOW).

Within these two programs CORE promotes and manages the key aspects that lead to community change towards organic products and practices.

To find out how to get involved or for more information contact us today.

5 May – World Hand Hygiene Day

WHO calls on everyone to be inspired by the global movement to achieve universal health coverage (UHC), i.e. achieving better health and well-being for all people at all ages, including financial risk protection, access to quality essential health care services and access to safe, effective, quality and affordable essential medicines and vaccines for all.

Infection Prevention and Control, including hand hygiene, is critical to achieve UHC as it is a practical and evidence-based approach with demonstrated impact on quality of care and patient safety across all levels of the health system.

6 May – International No Diet Day

It’s a day to celebrate and accept all bodies, in all forms of diversity. A day to remember and focus on why we fight against body discrimination, weight stigma, diet culture and fat phobia.

A day to leave the food rules at home and eat what you want, when you want, because you enjoy it. No guilt, no bad feelings, no obsessions.

A day to just… be.

7 May – World Asthma Day

Asthma is a serious condition that leads to the deaths of almost 400 Australians each year. But, in many cases, asthma is also a manageable condition, and people can live a full and uninhibited life unhindered by its symptoms.

Asthma affects people of all ages, from childhood to adulthood, and it can appear at all ages and stages of life. Just because you don’t have symptoms, it doesn’t mean the asthma is gone. The symptoms of asthma include wheezing, breathlessness, shortness of breath, coughing and chest tightness. This is because the airways are narrowed temporarily. People with asthma often experience their symptoms at night, early in the morning or after activity. Everyone is different.

With the right medication and a daily management plan in place, people with asthma can control their condition and live their lives fully.

8 May – World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day

8 May is World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day—a global day to celebrate the uniqueness and unity of our International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement.

8 May – International Thalassaemia Day

Celebrated on the 8th of May, the International Thalassaemia Day is devoted to raising awareness amongst the general public and decision-makers about thalassaemia, promoting and strengthening the lifelong and difficult struggle of patients against this severe blood disease, and commemorating all the people who are no longer with us, while renewing our promise to keep fighting until the final cure for thalassaemia is found.

8 May – World Ovarian Cancer Day

Established in 2013 by a group of leaders from ovarian cancer advocacy organisations around the world, May 8 – World Ovarian Cancer Day, is the one day of the year we globally raise our voices in solidarity in the fight against ovarian cancer.

10 May – World Lupus Day

World Lupus Day serves to call attention to the impact that lupus has on people around the world. The annual observance focuses on the need for improved patient healthcare services, increased research into the causes of and cure for lupus, earlier diagnosis and treatment of lupus, and better epidemiological data on lupus globally.

11 May to 17 May – Kidney Action Week

We’re calling all Australians to take kidney disease seriously by understanding their risk of getting this incurable disease.

Waiting for symptoms to appear is too late – you can lose 90% of kidney function without experiencing any symptoms.

Taking action is simple. It only takes 2 minutes.

Join us in calling all Australians to do the 2min online kidney risk test during Kidney Action Week, 11-17 May.

12 May – International Nurses Day

As the single largest workforce group, nurses are there at every turn, making a real difference to the care and the experience of patients and their families and carers. International Nurses Day is celebrated each year on 12 May, on the birthday of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing.

12 May – International Awareness Day for Chronic Immunological and Neurological Diseases

May 12th has been designated as International Awareness Day for Chronic Immunological and Neurological Diseases (CIND) since 1992. The CIND illnesses include Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME), Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), Fibromyalgia (FM), Gulf War Syndrome (GWS) and Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS).

12 May – International Day of Plant Health

Both our health and the health of our planet depend on plants. Plants make up 80% of the food we eat and 98% of the oxygen we breathe and yet they are under threat.  Up to 40% of food crops are lost due to plant pests and diseases every year. This is affecting both food security and agriculture, the main source of income for vulnerable rural communities.  

Climate change and human activities are altering ecosystems and damaging biodiversity while creating new niches for pests to thrive. International travel and trade, which has tripled in volume in the last decade, is also spreading pests and diseases. We need to protect plants both for people and the planet, and all of us have a role to play. 

13 May to 19 May – World Salt Awareness Week 2024

It’s time to shine the spotlight on SALT.  

Regularly eating too much salt can increase our risk of developing high blood pressure.    

High blood pressure is the main cause of strokes, and a major cause of heart attacks, the two biggest causes of death around the world, responsible for 17.9 million deaths annually. Most cases are entirely preventable, and so it’s vital we all take measures to improve our health and prevent these events from happening in the first place.
Reducing salt in our diets is one of the quickest and most effective ways to reduce our blood pressure and improve our health. What we don’t often realise is just how much salt we are eating because most of the salt we eat is already in the food we buy.    

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends we consume no more than 5g a day, yet globally, we are consuming far more than this. If population salt intake reduces to 5g a day, 1.65 million deaths could be prevented from cardiovascular disease each year.  

Regardless of our age, gender or ethnicity, we all stand to benefit from reducing our salt intake. The earlier we adapt to a lower salt diet, the less damage we create for our hearts, but with blood pressure in children rising, it’s clear that salt is not just an issue for older generations.  

15 May – International Day of Families

Held on 15th May every year, the International Day of Families was established by the United Nations in 1993 as a way to raise awareness of issues faced by families throughout the world.

16 May – International Day of Living Together in Peace

Living together in peace is all about accepting differences and having the ability to listen to, recognize, respect and appreciate others, as well as living in a peaceful and united way.

16 May – Coeliac Awareness Day

Every year, National Coeliac Associations around the globe use this day as an opportunity to raise awareness among the public on coeliac disease and other gluten-related issues.

In different countries, campaigns and informative sessions are organised during this week to share information about the latest research, treatments, early diagnosis campaigns and diets that can help people with coeliac disease and gluten-related issues to improve their well-being and diminish the discomfort related to life-long rigorous treatment and diet.

17 May – International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT)

The International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia was created in 2004 to draw attention to the violence and discrimination experienced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, intersex people, and all of those with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities or expressions, and sex characteristics.

Initially managed by the IDAHO Committee, the initiative is now collectively managed in collaboration between regional and thematic networks working to advance the rights of people with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities or expressions, and sex characteristics. This collaboration brings together organisations and initiatives at global, regional, national, and local levels.

The International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia is currently celebrated in more than 130 countries, including 37 where same-sex acts are illegal. Thousands of initiatives, big and small, are reported throughout the planet.

19 May – World IBD Day

World IBD Day takes place on 19 May each year and unites people worldwide in their fight against Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, known as inflammatory bowel diseases.

19 May – World Family Doctor Day

World Family Doctor Day (WFDD), on 19 May, is a significant occasion to highlight the vital role and contribution of family doctors and primary care teams in healthcare systems worldwide. Since its declaration by WONCA in 2010, WFDD has become an annual celebration that recognizes the central role of Family Doctors in delivering personal, comprehensive, and continuous health care to patients.

This day is an excellent opportunity to acknowledge and appreciate the progress made in family medicine and the exceptional contributions of primary care teams globally.

19 May to 25 May – National Palliative Care Week

Australians have a great attitude to life; we want to bring that same openness and curiosity to how we approach end of life and National Palliative Care Week gives us a chance to explore the thinking and conversations that go with it.

In 2024, National Palliative Care Week will run between Sunday, 19 May to Saturday, 25 May with a host of local events supported by a vibrant social media campaign allowing Australians to connect with the ‘people at the heart of quality palliative care’ – the doctors, nurses, social workers, volunteers, and many others.

The week coincides with significant and ongoing reforms across the health, aged care, and disability sectors and is a great opportunity for us to highlight the contribution palliative care is and can make.

20 May – World Bee Day

Pollinators allow many plants, including many food crops, to reproduce. Indeed, the food that we eat, such as fruits and vegetables, directly relies on pollinators. A world without pollinators would equal a world without food diversity – no blueberries, coffee, chocolate, cucumbers and so much more.

They also serve as sentinels for emergent environmental risks, signaling the health of local ecosystems.

20 May to 26 May – Kidney Health Week

Your kidneys play a vital role in your body. Without them, you would struggle to process toxins, and this would have a devastating impact on your health.

1 in 3 Australians are at risk of kidney disease, which is a deadly and incurable disease. If caught early, progression to kidney failure can be slowed or stopped. Take our Kidney Risk Test to understand your risk of kidney disease.

20 May to 26 May – Exercise Right Week

Exercise Right Week is an annual awareness campaign held in the last full week of May every year. Since it’s inception in 2014, the campaign has aimed to highlight the benefits of exercise for health and well-being, and to help Australians to understand where to get the “right” advice for their individual needs.

The campaign is brought to you by Exercise & Sports Science Australia (ESSA). ESSA is the peak body for exercise and sports science professionals in Australia, and is dedicated to helping Australians live healthier and more active lives.

20 May – International Clinical Trials Day

International Clinical Trials Day is held on 20 May each year to commemorate the day that James Lind began his trials into the causes of scurvy.

Lind’s experiments in 1747 were run under very different conditions to today. Serving as a surgeon on the HMS Salisbury, his trial consisted of just 12 men, grouped into pairs and given a variety of dietary supplements from cider to oranges and lemons.

The trial only lasted six days but, within that time, there was a noticeable improvement in the group eating the fruit, providing Lind with evidence of the link between citrus fruits and scurvy.

Clinical trials have come a long way since Lind’s discovery. Each year on May 20 we pause to remember his work and acknowledge the major improvements in health outcomes that have come since thanks to clinicians who are dedicated to finding answers to important clinical questions and members of the community who participate in clinical trials.

20 May to 26 May – National Volunteer Week

We are pleased to announce the theme for National Volunteer Week 2024 is ‘Something for Everyone’.
National Volunteer Week 2024 will recognise the diverse passions and talents everyone brings to the act of volunteering.

It’s an invitation to explore the myriad of opportunities available, emphasising that there’s a place for everyone in the world of volunteering. Whether you’re drawn to environmental causes, community outreach, education, or beyond, there’s a place where your unique skills and interests can flourish.

Let’s come together during National Volunteer Week, embracing this theme to showcase the vast spectrum of possibilities and the transformative impact that emerges when everyone finds their meaningful role in making a difference.

20 May to 26 May – Spinal Health Week

National Spinal Health Week is an initiative of the Australian Chiropractors Association (ACA). It is Australia’s longest-running national health awareness campaign dedicated to improving the spinal health of Australians of all ages.

Annually, Spinal Health Week focusses on a specific spinal health issue while promoting the importance of maintaining good spinal health to improve overall wellbeing. In 2024, the campaign focusses on the causes of back pain and the negative effects back problems are having on Australians and the economy.

20 May – World Bee Day

Bees are important to our livelihood as they help to pollinate most of the crops we eat and many that feed farm animals. Nearly two-thirds of Australia’s agricultural production benefits from bee pollination.

But bee populations are under threat. Destruction of their natural habitat, intensive farming practices, and pests and diseases are just some of the complex reasons driving a decline in both the number and diversity of bees.

Without bees, our food security is at risk.

22 May – International Day for Biological Diversity

On May 22, 1992, the text of the Convention on Biological Diversity was adopted by the of the United Nations at a conference in Nairobi, Kenya. Since 2001, the International Day for Biological Diversity is celebrated each year on the anniversary of this date.

23 May – International Day to End Obstetric Fistula

Obstetric fistula is one of the most serious and tragic childbirth injuries. A hole between the birth canal and bladder and/or rectum, it is caused by prolonged, obstructed labour without access to timely, high-quality medical treatment. It leaves women with incontinence problems, and often leads to chronic medical problems, depression, social isolation and deepening poverty.

This problem is preventable with the correct medical assistance and its occurrence is a violation of human rights and a reminder of gross inequities.

We must put an end to the obstetric fistula as a critical step towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and realizing the promise of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action as well as the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development. Both plans are oriented to fight for women’s rights, including the sexual and reproductive health.

In order to reach this goal, the UN Population Fund has launched an updated manual that serves as a crucial resource and a guiding light on the path to achieving health, gender equality and human rights for all.

23 May – Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea

1 in 2 Australians are diagnosed with cancer before the age of 85.
We want to change that, and we need your help.

Your morning tea will help raise vital funds to bring us closer to a cancer free future.

24 May – Don’t Fry Day

To help reduce rising rates of skin cancer from overexposure to the ultraviolet (UV) rays of the sun, the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention has designated the Friday before Memorial Day as “Don’t Fry Day” to encourage sun safety awareness and to remind everyone to protect their skin while enjoying the outdoors.

The National Council encourages everyone, including non-profit organizations, local, state, and federal governments, public health professionals, and educators to promote the importance of skin cancer prevention and sun-safety behaviors to use the free Don’t Fry Day material and resources.

25 May to 31 May – Spinal Health Week

Spinal Health Week is an initiative of the Australian Chiropractors Association (ACA). It is Australia’s longest-running national health awareness campaign dedicated to improving the spinal health of Australians of all ages.

25 May to 31 May – International World Thyroid Awareness Week

A major effort to address thyroid diseases is essential. We want to raise the profile of thyroid diseases and have them included as a distinct member of the group of non-communicable diseases (NCDs), thereby enhancing their prevention and management.

25 May – World Thyroid Day

A major effort to address thyroid diseases is essential. We want to raise the profile of thyroid diseases and have them included as a distinct member of the group of non-communicable diseases (NCDs), thereby enhancing their prevention and management.

26 May to 1 June – Food Allergy Week

Food Allergy Week aims to raise awareness of food allergy including potentially fatal food allergies. During Food Allergy Week, Allergy & Anaphylaxis Australia (A&AA) is calling on all Australians to unite to help increase awareness and share information on what we can do to improve safety for people who live with food allergies. 

26 May – National Sorry Day

On the 26th of May 1997 the landmark Bringing them Home report was tabled in federal parliament. Bringing them Home is the final report of the National Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children from Their Families and was conducted by the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission (now called the Australian Human Rights Commission) between 1995 and 1997.

On 26 May 1998, the first National Sorry Day was held to commemorate the anniversary of the report and remember the grief, suffering and injustice experienced by the stolen generations.

26 May to 1 June – Food Allergy Week

Food Allergy Week aims to raise awareness of food allergy including potentially fatal food allergies. During Food Allergy Week, Allergy & Anaphylaxis Australia (A&AA) is calling on all Australians to unite to help increase awareness and share information on what we can do to improve safety for people who live with food allergies. 

27 May to 3 June – National Reconciliation Week

National Reconciliation Week (NRW) is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures, and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia.

The National Reconciliation Week theme for 2024, Now More Than Ever, is a reminder to all of us that no matter what, the fight for justice and the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people will —and must —continue.

29 May – International Day of UN Peacekeepers

Every day, United Nations peacekeepers work to protect hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people in the world’s most fragile political and security situations.

29 May – Torres Strait Islander Flag Day

The flag was officially recognised and presented to the people of Torres Strait on 29 May 1992 at the sixth “Torres Strait Cultural Festival”.

In the same year, it was recognised by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission (ATSIC) and given equal prominence with the Australian Aboriginal Flag.

The Federal Government initiated steps in 1994 to give the flag legal recognition. After a period of public consultation, the Government decided in July 1995 that the flag should be proclaimed a “Flag of Australia” under section 5 of the Flags Act 1953. The flag was proclaimed by the Governor General of Australia, William Hayden, on 14 July 1995.

30 May – World MS Day

World MS Day brings the global MS community together on May 30 to share stories, raise awareness and campaign with everyone affected by multiple sclerosis (MS).

31 May – World No Tobacco Day

This yearly celebration informs the public on the dangers of using tobacco, the business practices of tobacco companies, what WHO is doing to fight the tobacco epidemic, and what people around the world can do to claim their right to health and healthy living and to protect future generations.

31 May – Tracky Dack Day

For one day a year, tracky dacks become the fashion choice that says “I care.”
Here’s why – sick kids in hospital are encouraged to get into tracksuit pants and out of their pj’s to transform their mood. Any day in May 2024, we invite you to ‘dack up’ in solidarity with these children to show them that Australia cares.


1 June – Global Day of Parents

On June 1st, the United Nations celebrated Global Day of Parents, raising awareness of the importance of parenthood, its role in providing protection, and the tools needed for children’s positive development.

1 June to 7 June – World Haemochromatosis Week

In the first week of June each year we join with members of Haemochromatosis International, the international alliance of haemochromatosis support groups, to create a worldwide, coordinated haemochromatosis awareness campaign in each member country. Using all forms of media, displays, and other activities, this week is an opportunity to focus attention on haemochromatosis and the risk of inherited iron overload.

1 June to 31 August – Beard Season

Blokes are two times more likely to die from skin cancer in Australia than women. Thankfully, over 98% of skin cancers can be successfully treated if they’re found early. 

The 1st of June until the 31st of August is not only the ideal time to let your facial follicles flourish, it’s also the best time of year to get your skin checked. Right after summer.

Less sun means moles are easier to spot, treatment is generally more successful and appointments are (hopefully) a lot easier to make.

1 June to 30 June – Bowel Cancer Awareness Month

June is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month – Bowel Cancer Australia’s signature event to raise awareness of Australia’s second deadliest cancer and funds for the leading community-funded charity dedicated to prevention, early diagnosis, research, quality treatment and care, so everyone affected by bowel cancer can live their best life.

Bowel cancer claims the lives of 103 Australians every week (5,350 people a year) – but it’s one of the most treatable types of cancer when detected early.

While the risk of bowel cancer increases significantly with age, the disease doesn’t discriminate, affecting people of all ages.
299 Australians will be diagnosed with bowel cancer this week (15,531 people a year).

1 June to 30 June – Migraine Awareness Month

The month of June is Migraine Awareness Month with the theme “Your migraine, your way”.

Painaustralia’s pain champion and ABC medical reporter Sophie Scott talks to Migraine Australia about her own journey and experiences with migraine and her life as a health reporter.

2 June to 8 June – Tourette Syndrome Awareness Week

Tourette Syndrome (TS) is a type of Tic Disorder. Tics are involuntary, repetitive movements and vocalizations. They are the primary symptoms of a group of neurological conditions known collectively as Tic Disorders and individually as Tourette Syndrome (TS), Persistent (Chronic) Motor or Vocal Tic Disorder, and Provisional Tic Disorder.

These three Tic Disorders are named based on the types of tics present (motor, vocal/phonic, or both) and by the length of time that the tics have been present. TS most often begins between the ages of 2 and 21, and lasts throughout life. TS is NOT degenerative and people with TS can expect to live a normal life span.

3 June – World Bicycle Day

World Bicycle Day draws attention to the benefits of using the bicycle — a simple, affordable, clean and environmentally fit sustainable means of transportation.

3 June – World Orthoptic Day

The International Orthoptic Association (IOA) is the global voice of the orthoptic profession which internationally is made up of 15 member national professional organisations and 6 associate member organizations.

IOA World Orthoptic Day is the opportunity to heighten the visibility of the orthoptic profession and to promote the activities of orthoptists locally, nationally, and internationally.

3 June – Mabo Day

Every year on 3 June we celebrate Mabo Day, which commemorates the life of Eddie Koiko Mabo and marks the anniversary of the historic 1992 Mabo decision.
Eddie Mabo was a Torres Strait Islander man who challenged the claim that his family’s traditional land was owned by the Crown. The High Court’s decision in Mabo v Queensland (No 2) overturned that claim and set a precedent in Australian law for the recognition of Indigenous custodianship over their traditional land. 
The decision also overturned the colonial concept of terra nullius, Latin for ‘nobody’s land’. At the time of European settlement of Australia, terra nullius was used to justify the British Crown’s claim on the land – as though it was previously unoccupied territory. 
The Mabo decision was a watershed moment in Australian history. In addition to overturning a long-held colonial myth, it paved the way for subsequent native title claims. The Australian Parliament passed the Native Title Act 1993 the following year.

3 June to 9 June – World Heart Rhythm Week

World Heart Rhythm Week (WHRW) is Arrhythmia Alliance’s annual awareness week, hosting a series of events to raise awareness of arrhythmias amongst both healthcare professionals and the general public while promoting our 2024 theme: 


3 June to 7 June – Orthoptics Awareness Week

Orthoptics Awareness Week (OAW) is an annual event in the Orthoptics Australia calendar. This week is when Orthoptists across Australia can promote the profession and celebrate the work they do.

Orthoptists can take this opportunity to showcase the significant role the profession makes to eye health, raise the profile of the profession and campaign on behalf of the profession and the patients/clients to governments and policy makers.

OAW is a chance for Orthoptists to unite in promoting the profession and highlight their role toward patients and the extensive ophthalmic community.

5 June – World Environment Day

Led by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) and held annually on 5 June since 1973, World Environment Day is the largest global platform for environmental public outreach and is celebrated by millions of people across the world.

5 June – World Orthoptic Day

The International Orthoptic Association (IOA) is the global voice of the orthoptic profession which internationally is made up of 15-member national professional organisations and 6 associate member organizations.

IOA World Orthoptic Day is the opportunity to heighten the visibility of the orthoptic profession and to promote the activities of orthoptists locally, nationally, and internationally.

5 June – IntInternational Day for the Fight against Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing5 JuneInt

Fisheries provide a vital source of food, employment, recreation, trade and economic well-being for people throughout the world. In a world of growing population and persistent hunger, fish has emerged as an important commodity for the achievement of food security.

However, efforts by the international community to ensure the sustainability of fisheries are being seriously compromised by illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing activities.

7 June – World Food Safety Day

Food safety is a shared responsibility between governments, producers and consumers. Everybody has a role to play from farm to table to ensure the food we consume is safe and will not cause damages to our health. Through the World Food Safety Day, WHO pursues its efforts to mainstream food safety in the public agenda and reduce the burden of foodborne diseases globally.

8 June – World Oceans Day

World Oceans Day reminds every one of the major role the oceans have in everyday life. They are the lungs of our Planet and a major source of food and medicine and a critical part of the biosphere.

The purpose of the Day is to inform the public of the impact of human actions on the ocean, develop a worldwide movement of citizens for the ocean, and mobilize and unite the world’s population on a project for the sustainable management of the world’s oceans.

10 June to 16 June – Men’s Health Week

Men’s Health Week focuses on not just physical health, but also men’s mental health and emotional wellbeing. During the week, we highlight the health challenges faced by men in Australia and worldwide and run events that can be replicated year-round to improve the physical, emotional and mental health of men and boys.

Through a series of promotions, events and publicity around the country, Men’s Health Week is designed to provoke thought and discussion about what needs to be done to improve male health.

Men’s Health Week is coordinated by the Centre for Male Health at Western Sydney University. Our close connections with community and government organisations across Australia enable us to develop the kinds of networks and partnerships that bring together people who care about better health for men and boys

12 June – World Day Against Child Labour

Children around the world are routinely engaged in paid and unpaid forms of work that are not harmful to them. However, they are classified as child labourers when they are either too young to work, or are involved in hazardous activities that may compromise their physical, mental, social or educational development. In the least developed countries, slightly more than one in four children (ages 5 to 17) are engaged in labour that is considered detrimental to their health and development.

In July 2019, the General Assembly unanimously adopted a resolution declaring 2021 as the International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour, and has asked the International Labour Organization to take the lead in its implementation. The international year will be an ideal opportunity to reinvigorate efforts to achieve SDG Target 8.7 to end all forms of child labour by 2025.

12 June to 19 June – National Blood Donor Week

How do you say thank you to blood donors for volunteering every day to save lives? With National Blood Donor Week (NBDW) — a week of celebrating donors!

Each year around World Blood Donor Day on 14 June, Lifeblood recognises and thanks our incredible donors for all they do.

13 June – International Albinism Awareness Day

Albinism is a rare, non-contagious, genetically inherited difference present at birth. In almost all types of albinism, both parents must carry the gene for it to be passed on, even if they do not have albinism themselves. The condition is found in both sexes regardless of ethnicity and in all countries of the world.

Albinism results in a lack of pigmentation (melanin) in the hair, skin and eyes, causing vulnerability to the sun and bright light. As a result, almost all people with albinism are visually impaired and are prone to developing skin cancer. There is no cure for the absence of melanin that is central to albinism.

The United Nations Human Rights Council adopted a resolution in 2013 (A/HRC/RES/23/13) calling for the prevention of attacks and discrimination against persons with albinism. Moreover, in response to the call from civil society organizations advocating to consider persons with albinism as a specific group with particular needs that require special attention, the Council created the mandate of the Independent Expert on the enjoyment of human rights by persons with albinism.

link Visit the event website

14 June – World Blood Donor Day

Every year countries around the world celebrate World Blood Donor Day (WBDD). The event serves to raise awareness of the need for safe blood and blood products and to thank voluntary, unpaid blood donors for their life-saving gifts of blood.

15 June – World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) is commemorated each year on 15 June to highlight one of the worst manifestations of ageism and inequality in our society, elder abuse.

17 June – World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought

Droughts are among the greatest threats to sustainable development, especially in developing countries, but increasingly so in developed nations too. In fact, forecasts estimate that by 2050 droughts may affect over three-quarters of the world’s population.

The number and duration of droughts has increased by 29 percent since 2000, as compared to the two previous decades (WMO 2021). When more than 2.3 billion people already face water stress, this is a huge problem. More and more of us will be living in areas with extreme water shortages, including an estimated one in four children by 2040 (UNICEF). No country is immune to drought (UN-Water 2021).

18 June – International Day for Countering Hate Speech

Hate speech is on the rise worldwide with the potential to incite violence, undermine social cohesion and tolerance, and cause psychological, emotional, and physical harm to those affected.

Hate speech not only affects the specific individuals and groups targeted, but societies at large.

The devastating effect of hatred is sadly nothing new. However, its scale and impact are amplified today by new technologies of communication, so much so that hate speech, has become one of the most frequent methods for spreading divisive rhetoric and ideologies on a global scale. If left unchecked, hate speech can even harm peace and development, as it lays the ground for conflicts and tensions, wide scale human rights violations.

In July 2021, the UN General Assembly highlighted global concerns over “the exponential spread and proliferation of hate speech” around the world and adopted a resolution on “promoting inter-religious and intercultural dialogue and tolerance in countering hate speech”.

The resolution recognizes the need to counter discrimination, xenophobia and hate speech and calls on all relevant actors, including States, to increase their efforts to address this phenomenon, in line with international human rights law.

The resolution proclaimed 18 June as the International Day for Countering Hate Speech, which will be marked for the first time in 2022.

18 June – Sustainable Gastronomy Day

Gastronomy is sometimes called the art of food. It can also refer to a style of cooking from a particular region. In other words, gastronomy often refers to local food and cuisine. Sustainability is the idea that something (e.g. agriculture, fishing or even preparation of food) is done in a way that is not wasteful of our natural resources and can be continued into the future without being detrimental to our environment or health.

Sustainable gastronomy, therefore, means cuisine that takes into account where the ingredients are from, how the food is grown and how it gets to our markets and eventually to our plates.

The UN General Assembly adopted on 21 December 2016 its resolution A/RES/71/246 and designated 18 June as an international observance, Sustainable Gastronomy Day.

The decision acknowledges gastronomy as a cultural expression related to the natural and cultural diversity of the world.

19 June – World Sickle Cell Day

Under recommendation by a United Nations Resolution in 2008, World Sickle Cell Day has been celebrated globally every year on June 19th to raise awareness of sickle cell disease, also known as sickle cell anaemia, recognising the disease as a global public health concern.

19 June – Red Apple Day

Red Apple Day is Bowel Cancer Australia’s Annual Giving Day, when Australians are encouraged to support the vital work of the charity.
If you’ve ever thought about raising funds and awareness for bowel cancer, then Red Apple Day is the time to do it!
Host an apple themed virtual brunch, morning or afternoon tea, dinner or evening catch-up.
Create your Red Apple Day online fundraising page as an individual or a team now.

20 June – World Refugee Day

World Refugee Day is an international day designated by the United Nations to honour refugees around the globe. It falls each year on June 20 and celebrates the strength and courage of people who have been forced to flee their home country to escape conflict or persecution. World Refugee Day is an occasion to build empathy and understanding for their plight and to recognize their resilience in rebuilding their lives.

21 June – MND Global Awareness Day

June 21 every year is MND/ALS Global Awareness Day. MND/ALS Associations across the world use the day to raise awareness of the disease to the general public. The day is also used to express hope that one day there will be a turning point in the search for cause, treatment and cure of this disease.

21 June – International Day of Yoga

Yoga is an ancient physical, mental and spiritual practice that originated in India. The word ‘yoga’ derives from Sanskrit and means to join or to unite, symbolizing the union of body and consciousness.

Today it is practiced in various forms around the world and continues to grow in popularity.

Recognizing its universal appeal, on 11 December 2014, the United Nations proclaimed 21 June as the International Day of Yoga by resolution 69/131.

The International Day of Yoga aims to raise awareness worldwide of the many benefits of practicing yoga.

22 June – World Rainforest Day

Founded in 2017 by Rainforest Partnership, World Rainforest Day recognizes standing, healthy forests as one of the most powerful and cost-effective climate change mitigation tools we have — and creates a global movement to protect and restore them.

We connect forest-focused organizations with new partners, non-environmental sectors to the forest, and aspiring rainforest guardians to impact pathways. Our partner network consists of rainforest organizations, indigenous groups, policy representatives, youth leaders, the private sector, creative guilds, and more, collaborating and innovating for more holistic forest protection.

26 June – International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking

People first: stop stigma and discrimination, strengthen prevention.

The world drug problem is a complex issue that affects millions of people worldwide. Many people who use drugs face stigma and discrimination, which can further harm their physical and mental health and prevent them from accessing the help they need. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) recognizes the importance of taking a people-centered approach to drug policies, with a focus on human rights, compassion, and evidence-based practices.

The International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, or World Drug Day, is marked on 26 June every year to strengthen action and cooperation in achieving a world free of drug abuse. The aim of this year’s campaign is to raise awareness about the importance of treating people who use drugs with respect and empathy; providing evidence-based, voluntary services for all; offering alternatives to punishment; prioritizing prevention; and leading with compassion. The campaign also aims to combat stigma and discrimination against people who use drugs by promoting language and attitudes that are respectful and non-judgmental.

29 June – World Scleroderma Day

Each year on 29th Juen the world’s scleroderma community comes together to recognize World Scleroderma Day. On this day in 1940, internationally renowned Swiss painter Paul Klee died. He had scleroderma and his artwork was widely influenced by his experience with the condition.


1 July to 31 July – Dry July

Dry July is a fundraiser that challenges you to go alcohol-free in July to raise funds for people affected by cancer.

The funds raised through Dry July will provide invaluable services to cancer patients, their families and carers – whether it’s a lift to a life-saving appointment, guidance from a specialist nurse, connection to an informative voice, access to therapy programs or a bed close to treatment.

7 July to 14 July – NAIDOC Week

National NAIDOC Week celebrations are held across Australia in the first week of July each year (Sunday to Sunday), to celebrate and recognise the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

NAIDOC Week is an opportunity for all Australians to learn about  First Nations cultures and histories and participate in celebrations of the oldest, continuous living cultures on earth.

11 July – World Population Day

In an ideal world, 8 billion people means 8 billion opportunities for healthier societies empowered by rights and choices. But the playing field is not and has never been even. Based on gender, ethnicity, class, religion, sexual orientation, disability and origin, among other factors, too many are still exposed to discrimination, harassment and violence. We do ourselves no favors when neglecting those left behind.

Let no alarmist headline distract from the work at hand: investing in human and physical capital for inclusive, productive societies that uphold human and reproductive rights. Only then can we tackle the enormous challenges facing our planet and forge a world where health, dignity and education are rights and realities, not privileges and empty promises. In a world of 8 billion, there must always be space for possibility.

14 July to 20 July – National Diabetes Week

Diabetes doesn’t discriminate and type 1 and type 2 are both more common than you think. We’d love it if you could help us get the word out there. Below you’ll find posters that you can download and share with your friends, family, colleagues and community.

We don’t want the next person diagnosed with diabetes to be your child, sister, brother, mother, father, husband, wife or friend. With your help we can spread the word and raise awareness of the risks of diabetes.

22 July to 28 July – National Pain Week

Chronic pain affects over 3.6 million Australians.

Why are more people not talking about it? 

Pain is a vicious cycle that can trap people in a spiral of stigma, isolation, and mental health challenges, colouring everything about your life.

Lend your voice to the National Pain Survey 2024 to end this vicious cycle.

25 July – World Drowning Prevention Day

World Drowning Prevention Day, declared through the April 2021 UN General Assembly Resolution A/RES/75/273 “Global drowning prevention”, is held annually on 25 July. This global advocacy event serves as an opportunity to highlight the tragic and profound impact of drowning on families and communities and offer life-saving solutions to prevent it.

An estimated 236,000 people drown every year, and drowning is among the ten leading causes of death for children aged 5-14 years.

More than 90% of drowning deaths occur in rivers, lakes, wells, domestic water storage vessels and swimming pools in low- and middle-income countries, with children and adolescents in rural areas disproportionately affected.

26 July – Schools Tree Day

Planet Ark’s National Tree Day started in 1996 and has grown into Australia’s largest community tree planting and nature care event.

It’s a call to action for all Australians to get their hands dirty and give back to the community.
While every day can be Tree Day, we dedicate the celebration of Schools Tree Day and National Tree Day on the last Friday and Sunday in July.

28 July – World Hepatitis Day

World Hepatitis Day, 28 July, is an opportunity to step up national and international efforts on hepatitis, encourage actions and engagement by individuals, partners and the public and highlight the need for a greater global response as outlined in the WHO’s Global hepatitis report of 2017.

The date of 28 July was chosen because it is the birthday of Nobel-prize winning scientist Dr Baruch Blumberg, who discovered hepatitis B virus (HBV) and developed a diagnostic test and vaccine for the virus. 

Low coverage of testing and treatment is the most important gap to be addressed in order to achieve the global elimination goals by 2030.

28 July to 4 August – DonateLife Week

DonateLife Week is our national awareness week that takes place in July each year to encourage more Australians to get behind organ and tissue donation.

28 July – National Tree Day

Planet Ark’s National Tree Day started in 1996 and has grown into Australia’s largest community tree planting and nature care event.

It’s a call to action for all Australians to get their hands dirty and give back to the community.

While every day can be Tree Day, we dedicate the celebration of Schools Tree Day and National Tree Day on the last Friday and Sunday in July.

30 July – International Day of Friendship

The International Day of Friendship was proclaimed in 2011 by the UN General Assembly with the idea that friendship between peoples, countries, cultures and individuals can inspire peace efforts and build bridges between communities.

The resolution places emphasis on involving young people, as future leaders, in community activities that include different cultures and promote international understanding and respect for diversity.

To mark the International Day of Friendship the UN encourages governments, international organizations and civil society groups to hold events, activities and initiatives that contribute to the efforts of the international community towards promoting a dialogue among civilizations, solidarity, mutual understanding and reconciliation.

The International Day of Friendship is an initiative that follows on the proposal made by UNESCO defining the Culture of Peace as a set of values, attitudes and behaviours that reject violence and endeavour to prevent conflicts by addressing their root causes with a view to solving problems. It was then adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1997.


1 August to 7 August – World Breastfeeding Week

World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA) is a global network of individuals and organisations dedicated to the protection, promotion and support of breastfeeding worldwide.

Annually, WABA coordinates and organises the World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) between Aug 1-7. Since 2016, we have aligned our WBW campaign to United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

1 August to 31 August – Tradies National Health Month

August is Tradies National Health Month – an awareness initiative that focuses on the importance of tradies health.

It was established by the APA because physiotherapists are uniquely placed to prevent and treat musculoskeletal concerns throughout a worker’s lifespan. With tradies making up 30 per cent of the workforce, it’s in all our interest to help them stay healthy.

2 August – Jeans for Genes

The families of the 1 in 20 kids facing a birth defect or genetic disease are used to hearing words like “incurable” or “lifelong effects”. It doesn’t have to be this way. Right now, we’re working on gene therapy to find cures for previously incurable genetic diseases.

Kids just want to be kids, but instead of playing sports with their friends or catching butterflies on a sunny day, these kids are getting liver transplants, taking dozens of medications, or getting their next dose of chemotherapy.

Your support helps the scientists at Children’s Medical Research Institute find cures, so these kids and millions more like them can go back to being kids. Thank you!

4 August – National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day

National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day (Children’s Day) is our national day dedicated to celebrating our children. Children’s Day is celebrated across the country each year on 4 August.

5 August to 11 August – Loneliness Awareness Week

Right now, more than 6 million Australians feel lonely. That’s 1 in 3 people.
Your friend, neighbour, parent, partner, child, or colleague could be feeling lonely.

Why? Because loneliness is less about how many people you’re surrounded by, and more about how connected you feel to those people. It can affect anyone.

Despite how common loneliness is, 1 in 2 people are too embarrassed to talk about it due to misconceptions and stigma within our community. But we need to. Because persistent loneliness can lead to heart conditions, mental ill health, dementia, and premature death.

Reducing loneliness is a goal we must tackle together, as a country.

5 August to 11 February – Dental Health Week

Dental Health Week, which takes place in the first full week of August, is the Australian Dental Association’s major annual oral health promotion event. Its aim is to educate Australians about the importance of maintaining good oral health in every aspect of their lives.

It has three main objectives:
-promote oral health education and awareness in the general community
-motivate and educate dental professionals to promote oral health
-encourage ongoing collaboration within the dental profession.

5 August to 11 August – National Stroke Week

National Stroke Week encourages the community to fight stroke together so that you or your loved ones can continue to enjoy life during and after recovery.

Fighting stroke together aims to bring people together to share knowledge, support and resources to help prevent strokes from occurring and to aid in the recovery process for those who have experienced a stroke.

5 August to 11 August – Dental Health Week

In 2024, Dental Health Week will focus on the importance of gum health. 

Dental Health Week (DHW) is the Australian Dental Association’s (ADA) major annual oral health campaign. The campaign focuses on the importance of taking steps to care for your teeth and gums to help you keep your teeth and smile for life.

9 August – International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples

There are an estimated 476 million indigenous peoples in the world living across 90 countries. They make up less than 5 per cent of the world’s population, but account for 15 per cent of the poorest. They speak an overwhelming majority of the world’s estimated 7,000 languages and represent 5,000 different cultures.

Indigenous peoples are inheritors and practitioners of unique cultures and ways of relating to people and the environment. They have retained social, cultural, economic and political characteristics that are distinct from those of the dominant societies in which they live. Despite their cultural differences, indigenous peoples from around the world share common problems related to the protection of their rights as distinct peoples.

Indigenous peoples have sought recognition of their identities, their way of life and their right to traditional lands, territories and natural resources for years. Yet, throughout history, their rights have been violated. Indigenous peoples today, are arguably among the most disadvantaged and vulnerable groups of people in the world. The international community now recognizes that special measures are required to protect their rights and maintain their distinct cultures and way of life.

In order to raise awareness of the needs of these population groups, every 9 August commemorates the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples, chosen in recognition of the first meeting of the UN Working Group on Indigenous Populations held in Geneva in 1982.

12 August – International Youth Day

International Youth Day is commemorated every year on 12 August, bringing youth issues to the attention of the international community and celebrating the potential of youth as partners in today’s global society.

16 August – National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence

Supporting Australian school communities with evidence-informed resources and activities for a proactive approach to bullying prevention and education.

19 August – World Humanitarian Day

On 19 August, we come together to honour humanitarians around the world who strive to meet ever-growing global needs. No matter the danger or the hardship, humanitarians venture deep into disaster-stricken regions and on the front lines of conflict, strive to save and protect people in need.

19 August to 25 August – Brain Injury Awareness Week

Brain Injury Awareness Week is held annually to raise awareness of brain injury and its impact in Australia.

21 August to 26 August – Speech Pathology Week

Communication is a basic human right and Speech Pathology Week helps to raise awareness of communication disability and the role of speech pathologists. 

One in 7 Australians with communication disability needs formal assistance with communication. Recognising communication disability helps builds a fairer society. People thrive when they can communicate effectively. Because, in the end, communication is everyone’s right

30 August – Wear it Purple Day

As a day of significance for many Australians, it focuses on our LGBTQIA+ youth and the issues they face, whilst showing them they have the right to be proud of who they are and who they are becoming. Wear it Purple Day is now an international movement of expression, celebration and support.

31 August – International Overdose Awareness Day

The world’s annual campaign to end overdose, remember without stigma those who have died, and acknowledge the grief of the family and friends left behind.


1 September to 30 September – World Alzheimer’s Month

Each September, people unite from all corners of the world to raise awareness and to challenge the stigma that persists around Alzheimer’s disease and all types of dementia.

During World Alzheimer’s Month, we call on everyone, from individuals to large organisations, including every Alzheimer and dementia association globally, to support World Alzheimer’s Month by getting involved in some way.   

1 September to 30 September – Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Shine a spotlight on this devastating disease in September.
Seventy per cent of Australians are unaware that more kids die from cancer than any other disease in this country. With awareness, comes support. Government funding only stretches so far so it is vital the community step up to help fund the scientific research so urgently needed.

1 September to 30 September – Gynaecological Cancer Awareness Month

September is Gynaecological Cancer Awareness Month. The Australian Gynaecological Cancer Foundation encourages everyone (not just women!) to learn more about gynaecological cancers, the signs and symptoms, where to get support and how you can help us fund research that will save lives.

Every two hours an Australian woman is diagnosed with a gynaecological cancer. These are cancers that involve the female reproductive organs – the vulva, vagina, cervix, uterus, fallopian tubes, ovaries and placenta.

The most common gynae cancer is uterine or endometrial cancer. In 2020, the estimated number of new cases diagnosed in Australia was 3,224 women. The second most common is ovarian cancer, which is often referred to as the silent killer as there are often no symptoms of the disease until it is at an advanced stage. 

1 September to 30 September – Biodiversity Month

We celebrate Biodiversity Month every September and promote the importance of:
– connecting with nature and
– caring for nature in all its diversity – its biodiversity!

Nature is valuable and we need nature. It provides the building blocks for our survival, such as food, clean air, water, and shelter. Nature also supports our health and wellbeing, and our economy. And while we need nature, nature also needs us.

1 September – Gold Bow Day

Every year on 1st September, the Australian Thyroid Foundation’s Gold Bow Day raises awareness about the importance of being aware of symptoms and changes to your thyroid gland, which maybe a result in Thyroid Cancer.

1 September to 30 September – Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

September is International Prostate Cancer Awareness MonthThe Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia is asking Australia to get involved in helping create awareness, and raise the much-needed funds to assist in the fight against prostate cancer.

1 September to 30 September – STEPtember

This STEPtember, join a community of over 120,000 Australians moving together to drive meaningful change for people with cerebral palsy.

STEPtember is a fun and inclusive virtual challenge that encourages you to move your way to 10,000 steps a day – whenever, wherever, and however you like – from 1-30 September.

Every 20 hours, an Australian child is diagnosed with cerebral palsy. Taking on the challenge and fundraising for life-changing research, treatment, services and assistive technologies, supports people with cerebral palsy to live their best life.

Register today and join an incredible community of Australians who are making positive impact for people with cerebral palsy.

2 September to 6 September – Women’s Health Week

Supporting women to make informed decisions about their health with information that’s easy to understand.

4 September – PKD Awareness Day

PKD Awareness Day takes place each year on September 4th and is our day to raise awareness for Polycystic Kidney Disease. Though PKD affects more than 25 thousand Australians and millions worldwide, many people have never heard of this disease. Together, we can change that! The more people that know about PKD, the closer we can get to additional treatments and a cure!

4 September – World Sexual Health Day

“WHO recognizes that people have sex as part of a healthy life and intimate relationships, and not solely for the purpose of reproduction. Our commitment to research, evidence, guidance and enthusiastic promotion of sexual health is essential to every person’s fulfilment of their human rights related to sexuality and well-being.”

Activities led by WHO and the United Nations Special Research Programme HRP include:
– education, counselling and care related to sexuality, sexual identity, and sexual relationships
– addressing sexual function and psychosexual counselling
– promoting positive sexual and psychosocial development
– prevention and control of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV
– prevention and management of cervical and other cancers of the reproductive system.

4 September – Indigenous Literacy Day

Indigenous Literacy Day is celebrated on the first Wednesday in September. It aims to help raise funds to raise literacy levels and improve the lives and opportunities of Indigenous Australians living in remote and isolated regions.

We need your support to help raise funds to buy books and literacy resources for children in these communities.

5 September – International Day of Charity

The International Day of Charity was established with the objective of sensitizing and mobilizing people, NGOs, and stakeholders all around the world to help others through volunteer and philanthropic activities.

The date of 5 September was chosen in order to commemorate the anniversary of the passing away of Mother Teresa of Calcutta, who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979 “for work undertaken in the struggle to overcome poverty and distress, which also constitute a threat to peace.”

6 September – Walk to Work Day

People who walk before or during work are generally healthier, more productive and less likely to be sick or absent. It’s in the best interests of all individuals and organisations to build walking into their daily routine and support the Walk to Work program.

7 September – World Duchenne Awareness Day

The World Duchenne Awareness Day 2023 theme is ‘Duchenne: Breaking Barriers’. World Duchenne Awareness Day (WDAD) is an annual event held on September 7. With this, WDAD supports creating a society that provides equal opportunities for all.

7 September – International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies

UN Member States recognize the need to substantially reduce the number of deaths and illnesses from hazardous chemicals and air, water and soil pollution and contamination by 2030, as well as to reduce the adverse per capita environmental impact of cities, including by paying special attention to air quality and municipal and other waste management by 2030.

Clean air is important for the health and day-to-day lives of people, while air pollution is the single greatest environmental risk to human health and one of the main avoidable causes of death and disease globally. Air pollution disproportionately affects women, children and older persons, and also has a negative impact on ecosystems.

Today, the international community acknowledges that improving air quality can enhance climate change mitigation and that climate change mitigation efforts can improve air quality.
Encouraged by the increasing interest of the international community in clean air, and emphasizing the need to make further efforts to improve air quality, including reducing air pollution, to protect human health, the General Assembly decided to designate 7 September as the International Day of Clean Air for blue skies

8 September – International Literacy Day

Since 1967, International Literacy Day (ILD) celebrations have taken place annually around the world to remind the public of the importance of literacy as a matter of dignity and human rights, and to advance the literacy agenda towards a more literate and sustainable society. 

Despite steady progress made across the world, literacy challenges persist with at least 763 million young people and adults lacking basic literacy skills in 2020. 

This year’s International Literacy Day will be celebrated worldwide under the theme, ‘Promoting literacy for a world in transition: Building the foundation for sustainable and peaceful societies’.   

8 September – World Physiotherapy (PT) Day

World PT Day takes place every year on 8 September.

9 September – International Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Awareness Day

People all around the world gather for events to raise awareness about the dangers of drinking during pregnancy and the plight of individuals and families who struggle with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD).  The first FASDay was celebrated on 9/9/99.  This day was chosen so that on the ninth day of the ninth month of the year, the world will remember that during the nine months of pregnancy a woman should abstain from alcohol.  Anytime is a good time to raise awareness about Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD). 

9 September – World First Aid Day

World First Aid Day is an annual opportunity to highlight the importance of first aid around the globe as an act of humanitarian empowerment and as a key component of a wider resilience approach; it is an occasion to reach a wider public audience and try to change the way the world thinks about first aid. The Global First Aid Reference Centre is in charge to coordinate this event and provide resources for National Societies.

Since 2000, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and its National Societies have been honoring first aid on the Second Saturday of September of each year. This aims to raise public awareness on how first aid can save lives every day and specially in situations of crisis.

10 September – World Suicide Prevention Day

World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD) was established in 2003 in conjunction with the World Health Organisation (WHO) and is a significant advocacy and communication based event aimed at reaching national organisations, governments and the general public, giving a singular message that suicide can be prevented.

WSPD continues to grow year on year, with recent years seeing the day observed in more than 60 countries with hundreds of events ranging from educational and commemorative events to press briefings and public conferences. 

12 September – R U OK? Day

R U OK? is a public health promotion charity that encourages people to stay connected and have conversations that can help others through difficult times in their lives.

R U OK? contributes to suicide prevention efforts by encouraging people to invest more time in their personal relationships and building the capacity of informal support networks – friends, family and colleagues – to be alert to those around them, have a conversation if they identify signs of distress or difficulty and connect someone to appropriate support, long before they’re in crisis.

16 September – International Day of the Preservation of the Ozone Layer

The ozone layer, a fragile shield of gas, protects the Earth from the harmful portion of the rays of the sun, thus helping preserve life on the planet.

The phaseout of controlled uses of ozone depleting substances and the related reductions have not only helped protect the ozone layer for this and future generations, but have also contributed significantly to global efforts to address climate change; furthermore, it has protected human health and ecosystems by limiting the harmful ultraviolet radiation from reaching the Earth.

The scientific confirmation of the depletion of the ozone layer prompted the international community to establish a mechanism for cooperation to take action to protect the ozone layer. This was formalized in the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer, which was adopted and signed by 28 countries, on 22 March 1985. In September 1987, this led to the drafting of The Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer.

16 September – International Day for Interventional Cardiology

Interventional cardio-angiology improves health, increases life expectancy and improves the quality of life.
The first coronary angioplasty was performed by Dr. Andreas Grüntzig on 16 September 1977.

Since then angioplasty has been the procedure that has saved the most grams of myocardium at risk worldwide.

17 September – World Patient Safety Day

World Patient Safety Day calls for global solidarity and concerted action by all countries and international partners to improve patient safety.

The Day brings together patients, families, caregivers, communities, health workers, health care leaders and policy-makers to show their commitment to patient safety.

The resolution WHA 72.6 ‘Global action on patient safety’ recognizes patient safety as a global health priority and endorses the establishment of World Patient Safety Day to be observed annually on 17 September.

19 September – Dietitians Day

Dietitians Day is an annual celebration in September hosted by Dietitians Australia and supported by dietitians around the country.

When it comes to managing lifestyle through food and nutrition, a dietitian should be your first port of call. Ongoing and specialised training ensures dietitians are the reliable choice for life-changing food and nutrition support. Because we all have our own unique goals, challenges and lifestyles, APDs understand that our health is not a one-size fits all approach. They are trained to offer personalised health advice that is fine-tuned to your specific needs.

21 September – World Alzheimer’s Day

World Alzheimer’s Day takes place during World Alzheimer’s Month and is on 21 September every year.
In the build up to, and on the day of, many Alzheimer and dementia associations around the world host memory walks, fundraisers, awareness raising activities and campaigns to bring attention towards those in their community that are affected by Alzheimer’s disease or other types of dementia.  

21 September – International Day of Peace

Each year the International Day of Peace is observed around the world on 21 September. The UN General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, through observing 24 hours of non-violence and cease-fire.

22 September – World Car-Free Day

Every year on or around 22 September, cities across the globe celebrate World Car-Free Day, encouraging motorists to give up their cars for a day. The event highlights the numerous benefits of going car-free to citizens—including reduced air pollution and the promotion of walking and cycling in a safer environment.

The World Carfree Network says that the World Car-Free Day can be a showcase for just how our cities might look like, feel like, and sound like without car… 365 days a year.

23 September – International Day of Sign Languages

The International Day of Sign Languages is a unique opportunity to support and protect the linguistic identity and cultural diversity of all deaf people and other sign language users.

According to the World Federation of the Deaf, there are more than 70 million deaf people worldwide. More than 80% of them live in developing countries. Collectively, they use more than 300 different sign languages.

24 September – World Rivers Day

World Rivers Day is a celebration of the world’s waterways. It highlights the many values of rivers and strives to increase public awareness and encourages the improved stewardship of rivers around the world. Rivers in virtually every country face an array of threats, and only through our active involvement can we ensure their health in the years ahead.

25 September – World Pharmacists Day

Pharmacists are the custodians of medicine safety, not only in community pharmacies, but also in hospitals, in General Practice, in Aged Care Facilities, and in fact, right across our health system.

28 September – World Rabies Day

World Rabies Day is celebrated annually to raise awareness about rabies prevention and to highlight progress in defeating this horrifying disease.

28 September also marks the anniversary of Louis Pasteur’s death, the French chemist and microbiologist, who developed the first rabies vaccine.

Today, safe and efficacious animal and human vaccines are among the important tools that exist to eliminate human deaths from rabies while awareness is the key driver for success of communities to engage in effective rabies prevention.

29 September – World Heart Day


Spanning six continents, our hundreds of World Heart Federation (WHF) member organizations, the countless schools, universities, sports clubs and the vibrant cardiology community make World Heart Day (WHD) a truly global celebration.

Every year these groups and individuals bring their local flair, favor and colors to festivities, marking the day by sharing heart healthy regional specialties, leading a dance to get the whole community moving, and sharing life-saving lessons far and wide.

29 September – International Day of Awareness on Food Loss and Waste Reduction

Reducing food losses and waste is essential in a world where the number of people affected by hunger has been slowly on the rise since 2014, and tons and tons of edible food are lost and/or wasted every day.
Globally, around 14 percent of food produced is lost between harvest and retail, while an estimated 17 percent of total global food production is wasted (11 percent in households, 5 percent in the food service and 2 percent in retail).

The International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste is an opportunity to call to action both the public (national or local authorities) and the private sector (businesses and individuals), to prioritise actions and move ahead with innovation to reduce food loss and waste towards restoring and building back better and resilient-ready, food systems.

30 September – International Translation Day

International Translation Day is meant as an opportunity to pay tribute to the work of language professionals, which plays an important role in bringing nations together, facilitating dialogue, understanding and cooperation, contributing to development and strengthening world peace and security.

Transposition of a literary or scientific work, including technical work, from one language into another language, professional translation, including translation proper, interpretation and terminology, is indispensable to preserving clarity, a positive climate and productiveness in international public discourse and interpersonal communication.

Thus, on 24 May 2017, the General Assembly adopted resolution 71/288 on the role of language professionals in connecting nations and fostering peace, understanding and development, and declared 30 September as International Translation Day.


1 October to 31 October – Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Breast Cancer Awareness Month (BCAM) takes place every October. The aim of the BCAM is to shine a light on the devastating impact breast cancer has on thousands of Australians each day.

Over 20,000 Australians will be diagnosed with the disease this year alone.

That equates to 57 Australians every day.

1 October to 31 October – Spina Bifida Awareness Month

October is Spina Bifida Awareness Month — a time to celebrate the hundreds of thousands of people living with Spina Bifida. Every October, we highlight community stories that challenge us to raise more awareness and support for those living with Spina Bifida.  As a community, we can do this by raising awareness about Spina Bifida either in our own circles or larger networks. It’s also a great time for us to challenge ourselves to find new ways to get involved in raising awareness and advocacy activities.

1 October – World Vegetarian Day

Every year on October 1st, World Vegetarian Day kicks off a month of parties, potluck, presentations, food tasting displays…and lots of friendly discussions!

For those new to vegetarianism, it serves as an enticement to give meatless fare a try (even for a day) and learn about its many benefits. And, of course, it’s the perfect occasion for vegetarians and those already moving towards plant-based diets to celebrate their healthy, compassionate food choices.

1 October to 31 October – National Safe Work Month

October is National Safe Work Month—a time to commit to building a safe and healthy workplace.

Being healthy and safe means being free from physical and psychological harm. A safe and healthy workplace benefits everyone.  

The primary objective of National Safe Work Month is to encourage all individuals and organisations to prioritise safety in their workplaces and work towards reducing the number of work-related injuries, illnesses and fatalities. 

1 October to 31 October – Mental Health Month

Mental Health Month is celebrated each year in the month of October in NSW. This month encourages all of us to think about our mental health and wellbeing, regardless of whether we may have a lived experience of mental illness or not.

It also gives us the opportunity to understand the importance of good mental health in our everyday lives and encourages help seeking behaviours when needed.

1 October to 7 October – BPD Awareness Week

People living with borderline personality disorder (BPD) often experience stigma and discrimination which remains a significant barrier to accessing appropriate care.

There are several evidence-based treatments for BPD, such as Dialectical behaviour Therapy (DBT), Mentalization-Based Treatment (MBT), Schema-Focused Therapy (SFT) and Transference-Focused Psychotherapy (TFP). However, these may require many years of mastery and often have limited availability. Recently, structured generalist approaches have been developed drawn from the core principles of ‘what works’ from these specialist therapies. They have been proven to work for people experiencing BPD.

The core principles of care can be easily incorporated in the practice of health professionals, expanding access to treatment and ensuring every interaction can make a therapeutic. difference.

Be the difference, make a difference, by applying the BPD core principles of care in your practice.

1 October – International Day of Older Persons

Rapid growth in the number of people reaching older ages underscores the significance of promoting health, preventing, and treating illnesses throughout the entire course of life.

In societies with aging populations, it becomes imperative to adjust to the increasing number of elderly individuals who possess a diverse range of functional capacities. The capability to carry out essential functions and partake in everyday activities is influenced not solely by an individual’s inherent capacity but also by the social and physical environments in which they reside.

Supportive environments play a pivotal role in assisting older individuals to maintain their activity levels and independence as they progress in age.

2 October – International Day of Non-Violence

The International Day of Non-Violence is observed on 2 October, the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi, leader of the Indian independence movement and pioneer of the philosophy and strategy of non-violence.

According to General Assembly resolution A/RES/61/271 of 15 June 2007, which established the commemoration, the International Day is an occasion to “disseminate the message of non-violence, including through education and public awareness”. The resolution reaffirms “the universal relevance of the principle of non-violence” and the desire “to secure a culture of peace, tolerance, understanding and non-violence”.

2 October – International Day of Non-Violence

The International Day of Non-Violence is observed on 2 October, the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi, leader of the Indian independence movement and pioneer of the philosophy and strategy of non-violence.

6 October – World Cerebral Palsy Day

World Cerebral Palsy Day is a global movement that started in 2012. Last year, it reached over 10 million people. It aims to bring together people living with cerebral palsy, their families, supporters and organisations from over 100 countries. All with the aim to ensure a future in which children and adults with cerebral palsy have the same rights, access and opportunities as anyone else in our society.

Cerebral palsy is a physical disability that affects movement and posture. Many people with cerebral palsy have other related vision, hearing, communication and mobility needs. Its impact can range from a weakness in one hand, to almost a complete lack of voluntary movement.

6 October – World Smile Day

World Smile Day is a fantastic opportunity for everyone around the world to use the universal language of the smile. Smiling is a gesture that is understood across the world, whether you speak the same language or not. Sharing your smile makes you feel good, and makes the other person feel good too.

World Smile Day happens on the first Friday of October every year. The theme of the day is “Do an act of kindness. Help one person smile.” The aim to bring a bit of joy to the world by encouraging people to do random acts of kindness for each other. If everyone does one thing to make someone else smile, the world would be a much kinder and happier place.

9 October to 15 January – Podiatry Week

The aim of the week is to raise awareness of the full scope of the Podiatry profession and educate the public on the large range of ways Podiatrists can support their health.

Podiatrists are responsible for diagnosis and management of disorders, injuries and pain affecting the foot, ankle, and lower limbs, and have the ability to prescribe medicine as an Endorsed Prescriber.

You will find Podiatrists across all areas of the health sector – private practice, community health services, hospitals, rural and remote outreach clinics, rehabilitation centres, residential aged care, in the disability sector and in people’s homes.

10 October – World Homeless Day

The purpose of World Homeless Day is to draw attention to the needs of people who experience homelessness locally and provide opportunities for the community to get involved in responding to homelessness, while taking advantage of the stage an ‘international day’ provides – to end homelessness through improved policy and funding.

10 October – World Mental Health Day

The overall objective of World Mental Health Day is to raise awareness of mental health issues around the world and to mobilize efforts in support of mental health.

The Day provides an opportunity for all stakeholders working on mental health issues to talk about their work, and what more needs to be done to make mental health care a reality for people worldwide.

11 October – National Coming Out Day

Race, ethnicity, language, religion, culture, gender expression, sexual orientation and gender identity should never be barriers to us living our full lives.

Coming out or inviting someone in is a personal choice and is often a significant part of reclaiming this right and living in our identity publicly. We all deserve the right to live our lives genuinely, completely and honestly.

Be proud of who you are and your support for LGBTQ+ equality this National Coming Out Day!

Sharing our authentic selves with others is not always safe or easy, and it is not a one-day event — but when possible, it can be an extraordinarily powerful key to breaking down the barriers we face as LGBTQ+ people.

12 October – World Sight Day

World Sight Day:

– Is an opportunity to focus the world’s attention on eye health as a global issue.

– Raises awareness of eye health amongst individuals, families and communities.

– Is a platform to influence decision makers to prioritise eye health initiatives.

– Helps activate demand for eye health services globally.

World Sight Day is coordinated by the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) and supported by almost 200 IAPB Member organisations globally.

13 October to 19 October – National Carers Week

National Carers Week will run from Sunday 13 to Saturday 19 October 2024. It is a time to recognise, celebrate and raise awareness about the 2.65 million Australians who provide care and support to a family member or friend.

13 October – International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction

Since most countries at high risk of disasters are also among those with the highest share of the population living under the national poverty line, the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) encourages people to take action to break the cycle of disaster and growing inequality.

14 October – Allied Health Professions Day

While it is well known that allied health professionals play a key role in the health and wellbeing of all Australians, health system reform is finally recognising the value, both economic and clinical, of multidisciplinary care.

It is vital that allied health professionals are recognised alongside their nursing and medical colleagues for their role in designing and implementing a comprehensive healthcare system, that truly wraps around the consumer.

15 October – International Day of Rural Women

The crucial role that women and girls play in ensuring the sustainability of rural households and communities, improving rural livelihoods and overall wellbeing, has been increasingly recognized. Women account for a substantial proportion of the agricultural labour force, including informal work, and perform the bulk of unpaid care and domestic work within families and households in rural areas. They make significant contributions to agricultural production, food security and nutrition, land and natural resource management, and building climate resilience.

This International Day, under the theme “Rural women confront the global cost-of-living crisis”, let’s recognize the work of these heroines in the food systems of the world, and let’s claim rural areas with equal opportunities for all.

16 October – World Food Day

Water is essential to life on Earth. It covers the majority of the Earth’s surface, makes up over 50% of our bodies, produces our food, and supports livelihoods.  
But this precious resource is not infinite and we need to stop taking it for granted. What we eat, and how that food is produced all affect water. 

Together, we can take water action for food and be the change.

16 October – National Ride2Work Day

Riding a bike is one of the easiest and most time-efficient ways to get to work. By swapping the car, train or bus for a bike, you can get your recommended daily exercise without having to spend extra time or money at the gym. We promise you’ll be happier and healthier for it!

24 October – World Polio Day

World Polio Day highlights the global efforts to end poliomyelitis (polio) worldwide. Polio is a life-threatening disease caused by the poliovirus, which the World Health Assembly committed to eradicate in 1988. The WHO European Region was declared polio-free in 2002 and has sustained this status every year since then.

Every year on 24 October, we observe World Polio Day to raise awareness of the importance of polio vaccination to protect every child from this devastating disease, and to celebrate the many parents, professionals and volunteers whose contributions make polio eradication achievable.

To ensure a polio-free future for everyone, efforts must continue to maintain high immunization coverage, implement high-quality surveillance to detect any presence of the virus, and prepare to respond in the event of an outbreak.

27 October – World Occupational Therapy Day

Occupational Therapy Day was first launched on 27th October 2010. Since then, it has become an important date in the occupational therapy calendar to promote and celebrate the profession internationally.

The World Federation of Occupational Therapists (WFOT) is the international voice of the occupational therapy profession which globally comprises of 107 national occupational therapy professional organisations. World Occupational Therapy Day is the opportunity to heighten the visibility of the profession’s development work and to promote the activities of WFOT locally, nationally, and internationally.


1 November to 30 November – Workout 4 Women Challenge

Workout 4 Women is a free fitness challenge anyone can take part in. Register to move 4km each day throughout November and ask your friends and family to sponsor you.

Every kilometer you cover and dollar you raise, will be for a woman who has received the life-changing news of an ovarian cancer diagnosis.

1 November to 30 November – Movember

Movember fundraisers are a global community of fired up Mo Bros and Mo Sisters – aka rock stars making a difference in mental health and suicide prevention, prostate cancer and testicular cancer.

Your donation could help save a father, a brother, a son, a friend, a partner, a man’s life.

1 November to 30 November – Epilepsy Awareness Month

November is Epilepsy Awareness Month. To celebrate this significant month, we are inviting you to gather with your family, friends, community group or workplace and enjoy an outdoor picnic filled with delicious treats, laughter, and fun! Simply choose what you’d like to do on a day in November and at a time that best suits you!

People can develop epilepsy at any stage of their lives but a large number have their first seizures during childhood or adolescence, or alternatively much later in life.

1 November to 30 November – Lung Cancer Awareness Month

It’s important to know the symptoms of lung cancer as although lung cancer occurs mostly in people aged 60 and over, it can affect people of any age.

New and constantly evolving treatments such as immunotherapy are likely to continue to improve outcomes for people affected by lung cancer.

5 November – World Tsunami Awareness Day

Tsunamis can be deadly, but they needn’t be. Early warning and early action are effective tools to protect people, saving lives, and preventing the hazard from becoming a disaster. To be effective, tsunami early-warning systems must cover every at-risk person, they must be multi-hazard, and communities must be prepared so they can act quickly.

In December 2015, the UN General Assembly designated 5 November as World Tsunami Awareness Day, calling on countries, international bodies and civil society to raise tsunami awareness and share innovative approaches to risk reduction.

6 November – International Pathology Day

8 November – International Day of Radiology

The International Day of Radiology will take place on November 8 with the aim of building greater awareness of the value that radiology contributes to safe patient care and improving public understanding of the vital role radiologists and radiographers play in the healthcare continuum.

9 November – Genetic Counsellor Awareness Day

Genetic Counsellors play an indispensable role: helping individuals and families understand genetic conditions, the implications of genomic testing, and to make informed choices about their healthcare.

On this day we recognise all Genetic Counsellors, particularly those within the Australian Genomics research network, who make a significant difference in the lives of patients undergoing genomic testing.

10 November to 16 November – Perinatal Mental Health Week

PANDA created Perinatal Mental Health Week in 2005 to help the community and health professionals to better understand perinatal mental health.

We are proud of the work PANDA’s Community Champions, Clinical Champions, staff, volunteers and online community do to raise awareness.

Each year the community shares their stories to help achieve our vision of a society where perinatal mental health is valued and understood and where stigma and systemic barriers to seeking help no longer exist.

13 November – World Kindness Day

World Kindness Day is a global day that promotes the importance of being kind to each other, to yourself, and to the world.

If every Australian performed an act of kindness on World Kindness Day, we would have 25 million acts of kindness in
a single day.

The possibilities are endless – together let’s make Australia kinder.

14 November – World Diabetes Day

Globally, an estimated 422 million adults were living with diabetes in 2014, compared to 108 million in 1980. The global prevalence of diabetes has nearly doubled since 1980, rising from 4.7% to 8.5% in the adult population. This reflects an increase in associated risk factors such as being overweight or obese. Over the past decade, diabetes prevalence has risen faster in low and middle-income countries than in high-income countries.

Diabetes is a major cause of blindness, kidney failure, heart attack, stroke and lower limb amputation. Healthy diet, physical activity and avoiding tobacco use can prevent or delay type 2 diabetes. In addition diabetes can be treated and its consequences avoided or delayed with medication, regular screening and treatment for complications.

In 2007 General Assembly adopted resolution 61/225 designating 14 November as World Diabetes Day. The document recognized “the urgent need to pursue multilateral efforts to promote and improve human health, and provide access to treatment and health-care education.”

16 November – International Day of Tolerance

In 1996, the UN General Assembly adopted Resolution 51/95 proclaiming 16 November as International Day for Tolerance.

This action followed the adoption of a Declaration of Principles on Tolerance by UNESCO’s Member States on 16 November 1995. Among other things, the Declaration affirms that tolerance is neither indulgence nor indifference. It is respect and appreciation of the rich variety of our world’s cultures, our forms of expression and ways of being human.

Tolerance recognizes the universal human rights and fundamental freedoms of others. People are naturally diverse; only tolerance can ensure the survival of mixed communities in every region of the globe.

17 November – Cervical Cancer Elimination Day

Each year the World Health Organisation joins advocates around the world to commemorate a landmark Day of Action for Cervical Cancer Elimination and welcome groundbreaking new initiatives to end this devastating disease. The global movement to eliminate cervical cancer is driven by the energy, passion and momentum of communities, partners and individuals working towards catalyzing change.

17 November – World Prematurity Day

World Prematurity Day on 17 November is one of the most important days in the year to raise awareness of the challenges and burden of preterm birth globally. The day was initiated by EFCNI and partnering European parent organisations in 2008. Meanwhile, countless individuals and organisations from more than 100 countries join forces with activities, special events and commit to action to help address preterm birth and improve the situation of preterm babies and their families.

Worldwide, one in ten babies are born too early – more than 27,000 each year in Australia alone. Giving birth to a child is one of the paramount, most positive experiences in life. Having a baby born too soon is a significant trauma for families. Preterm birth also represents a severe financial burden for many families and our often struggling healthcare systems.

Raising awareness of preterm birth is the first step to defeating it: Preterm birth rates could be significantly reduced and lowered through overall information and improved treatment and care.

18 November to 24 November – World Antimicrobial Awareness Week

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) occurs when bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites change over time and no longer respond to medicines, making infections harder to treat and increasing the risk of disease spread, severe illness and death. As a result of drug resistance, antibiotics and other antimicrobial medicines become ineffective and infections become increasingly difficult or impossible to treat.

A global action plan to tackle the growing problem of resistance to antibiotics and other antimicrobial medicines was endorsed at the Sixty-eighth World Health Assembly in May 2015. One of the key objectives of the plan is to improve awareness and understanding of AMR through effective communication, education and training.

World Antimicrobial Awareness Week (WAAW) is a global campaign that is celebrated annually to improve awareness and understanding of AMR and encourage best practices among the public, One Health stakeholders and policymakers, who all play a critical role in reducing the further emergence and spread of AMR. 

18 November to 24 November – National Skin Cancer Action Week

Often called our ‘national cancer’, Australia has the highest rate of skin cancer in the world, with approximately two in three Australians diagnosed with skin cancer during their lifetime. Sadly, around 2000 Australians will die from this disease this year, and it is estimated that almost twice as many men as women will die from melanoma this year alone.

Yet research shows that many Australians, particularly men, aren’t regularly using all five forms of sun protection. This year, Cancer Council Australia is urging all Australians, especially men aged over 40, to be SunSmart and reduce their risk of developing skin cancer.

19 November – International Men’s Day

International Men’s Day (IMD) is celebrated on 19 November every year and is marked in around 80 countries worldwide.

Some people ask why we need an International Men’s Day? In Australia, IMD is a great opportunity to take part in a global conversation about manhood, masculinity and men’s issues by:
– Highlighting some of the social issues that men and boys face
– Making a difference for the men and boys in your community
– Celebrating men and boys in all their diversity
– Having some serious fun in the process

19 November – World Toilet Day

Toilets are a foundation stone of public health and play a critical role in protecting the environment.

To leave so many people behind without safe toilets puts in jeopardy the entire 2030 Agenda, with the poorest people, particularly women and girls, paying the highest price in terms of poor health, missed education, loss of productivity and general insecurity.

20 November – World Children’s Day

World Children’s Day was first established in 1954 as Universal Children’s Day and is celebrated on 20 November each year to promote international togetherness, awareness among children worldwide, and improving children’s welfare.

November 20th is an important date as it is the date in 1959 when the UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child. It is also the date in 1989 when the UN General Assembly adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Since 1990, World Children’s Day also marks the anniversary of the date that the UN General Assembly adopted both the Declaration and the Convention on children’s rights.

Mothers and fathers, teachers, nurses and doctors, government leaders and civil society activists, religious and community elders, corporate moguls and media professionals, as well as young people and children themselves, can play an important part in making World Children’s Day relevant for their societies, communities and nations.

World Children’s Day offers each of us an inspirational entry-point to advocate, promote and celebrate children’s rights, translating into dialogues and actions that will build a better world for children.

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

Violence against women and girls (VAWG) is one of the most widespread, persistent and devastating human rights violations in our world today remains largely unreported due to the impunity, silence, stigma and shame surrounding it.

In general terms, it manifests itself in physical, sexual and psychological forms, encompassing:
– intimate partner violence (battering, psychological abuse, marital rape, femicide);
– sexual violence and harassment (rape, forced sexual acts, unwanted sexual advances, child sexual abuse, forced – marriage, street harassment, stalking, cyber- harassment);
– human trafficking (slavery, sexual exploitation);
– female genital mutilation; and
– child marriage.

To further clarify, the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women issued by the UN General Assembly in 1993, defines violence against women as “any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life.”

29 November – World Movement Disorders Day

Movement disorders are neurologic conditions that can be especially difficult to diagnose, treat, and understand.  
That is why we are promoting #MoveDisorder awareness.  


1 December – World AIDS Day

World AIDS Day brings together people from around the world to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS and demonstrate international solidarity in the face of the pandemic.

The day is an opportunity for public and private partners to spread awareness about the status of the pandemic and encourage progress in HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care around the world. It has become one of the most widely recognized international health days and a key opportunity to raise awareness, commemorate those who have died, and celebrate victories such as increased access to treatment and prevention services.

1 December to 31 December – Decembeard and Decemhair Australia

Bowel Cancer Australia’s hair-raising campaign encourages you to be bold to raise awareness of Australia’s second deadliest cancer and funds to create real change.
Face, head, legs, body – if it’s hair – be bold for bowel cancer!
The options are limitless, and the choice is yours:

– Face, head, legs, body – if it’s hair – let it grow or let it go.
– Grow a beard or some chin stubble and promote your facial hair.
– Dye, decorate, shave or trim your precious hair or beard and create something amazing.
– Fake some luscious locks or make a hair-inspired creation.
– Donate the amount you spend on shaving/grooming or by skipping your next waxing appointment.

Created as a fun and quirky way to break the ice, Decembeard | Decembhair is also an opportunity to start a conversation about a topic that some people can find difficult to discuss.

3 December – International Day of Persons with Disabilities

When we secure the rights of persons with disabilities, we move our world closer to upholding the core values and principles of the United Nations Charter. 

The United Nations Disability Inclusion Strategy provides the foundation for sustainable and transformative progress on disability inclusion through all pillars of the work of the United Nations: peace and security, human rights, and development. 

5 December – International Volunteer Day

Volunteerism is one of the most vital delivery mechanisms for social, environmental and economic transformation, ensuring a lasting impact with its ability to change people’s mindsets, attitudes and behaviours.

People become actors of change and equal partners in the attainment of local, national and international progress towards sustainable human development and global peace.

The United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme recognizes the shared universal values underpinning volunteerism – free will, commitment, equity, engagement, solidarity, compassion, empathy and respect for others.

5 December – World Soil Day

World Soil Day (WSD) is held annually on 5 December as a means to focus attention on the importance of healthy soil and to advocate for the sustainable management of soil resources.

An international day to celebrate soil was recommended by the International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS) in 2002. Under the leadership of the Kingdom of Thailand and within the framework of the Global Soil Partnership, FAO has supported the formal establishment of WSD as a global awareness raising platform.

The FAO Conference unanimously endorsed World Soil Day in June 2013 and requested its official adoption at the 68th UN General Assembly. In December 2013, the UN General Assembly responded by designating 5 December 2014 as the first official World Soil Day.

10 December – Human Rights Day

Human Rights Day is observed every year on 10 December — the day the United Nations General Assembly adopted, in 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR).

The UDHR is a milestone document, which proclaims the inalienable rights that everyone is entitled to as a human being – regardless of race, colour, religion, sex, language, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Available in more than 500 languages, it is the most translated document in the world.

12 December – International Universal Health Coverage Day

On 12 December 2012, the United Nations General Assembly endorsed a resolution urging countries to accelerate progress toward universal health coverage (UHC) – the idea that everyone, everywhere should have access to quality, affordable health care. On 12 December 2017, the United Nations proclaimed 12 December as International Universal Health Coverage Day (UHC Day) by resolution 72/138.

International Universal Health Coverage Day aims to raise awareness of the need for strong and resilient health systems and universal health coverage with multi-stakeholder partners. Each year on 12 December, UHC advocates raise their voices to share the stories of the millions of people still waiting for health, champion what we have achieved so far, call on leaders to make bigger and smarter investments in health, and encourage diverse groups to make commitments to help move the world closer to UHC by 2030.

18 December – International Migrants Day

The UN Migration Agency (IOM) defines a migrant as any person who is moving or has moved across an international border or within a State away from his/her habitual place of residence, regardless of (1) the person’s legal status; (2) whether the movement is voluntary or involuntary; (3) what the causes for the movement are; or (4) what the length of the stay is.

Regardless of the reasons that compel people to move, migrants and displaced people represent some of the most vulnerable and marginalized groups in society, and are often exposed to abuse and exploitation, have limited access to essential services including healthcare, and are faced with xenophobic attacks and stigma fueled by misinformation.

20 December – International Human Solidarity Day

The Sustainable Development Agenda is centred on people & planet, underpinned by human rights and supported by a global partnership determined to lift people out of poverty, hunger and disease. It will, thus, be built on a foundation of global cooperation and solidarity.

International Human Solidarity Day is:
– a day to celebrate our unity in diversity;
– a day to remind governments to respect their commitments to international agreements;
– a day to raise public awareness of the importance of solidarity;
– a day to encourage debate on the ways to promote solidarity for the achievement of the Sustainable
Development Goals including poverty eradication;
– a day of action to encourage new initiatives for poverty eradication.

27 December – International Day of Epidemic Preparedness

The UN General Assembly invites all Member States, organizations of the United Nations system and other global, regional and subregional organizations, the private sector and civil society, including non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, individuals and other relevant stakeholders to observe the International Day of Epidemic Preparedness annually in an appropriate manner and in accordance with national contexts and priorities, through education and awareness-raising activities, in order to highlight the importance of the prevention of, preparedness for and partnership against epidemics.

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