Throughout the year, Veganuary encourages and supports people and businesses alike to move to a plant-based diet as a way of protecting the environment, preventing animal suffering, and improving the health of millions of people.
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.
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.
This coming February, we invite you to wear RED for someone close to your heart.
Heart disease is 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?
Help us make breakthroughs happen and reduce the devastation heart disease causes families and communities.
1 February to 28 February –
Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month
Educate. Only 31% of Australians know that ovarian cancer has the poorest survival rate of any female cancer in Australia. This devastating disease suffers from a lack of awareness and progress, we will continue to spread evidence based information every Australian should know about this disease.
Advocate on behalf of those impacted by ovarian cancer for more research funding, better laws and policies, greater access to affordable treatment options and ultimately better outcomes for all those affected.
Elevate the voices of women impacted by this disease by sharing their stories, their real life experiences and getting these stories in front of as many eyes and ears as possible.
NSW Seniors Festival is the largest festival for seniors in the Southern Hemisphere, reaching up to 500,000 seniors each year.
If you are over 60, NSW Seniors Festival gives you the chance to make new friends or get together with old ones at an array of local community events, many which are free or heavily discounted.
1 February to 28 February –
HeartKids Awareness Month
February is HeartKids Awareness Month. HeartKids is trying to raise awareness and funds in Australia about Childhood Heart Disease (CHD), which is one of the biggest killers of children under the age of one.
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.
5 February to 11 February –
Feeding Tube Awareness Week
The mission of Feeding Tube Awareness Week is to promote the positive benefits of feeding tubes as lifesaving medical interventions. The week also serves to educate the broader public about the medical reasons that children and adults are tube fed, the challenges that families face, and day-to-day life with tube feeding.
6 February –
International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation (WHO)
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 to 12 February –
Tinnitus Awareness Week
The impact of tinnitus can be devastating. In 2017, the International Tinnitus Journal reported that 45% of tinnitus sufferers experience anxiety and 33% have major depression. Yet, despite its ubiquity, tinnitus is poorly understood and frequently underestimated as a cause of suffering and distress.
Tinnitus Awareness Week, takes place from 6 – 12 February 2023, with our Tea for Tinnitus fundraising event on 9 February.
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.
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.
HeartKids Australia is launching Sweetheart Day on 14 February to raise awareness of childhood heart disease and encourage donations to continue our work in providing support, advocacy, growing awareness and enabling further research into CHD.
National Condom Day is celebrated each year to remind us that one of the easiest ways to look after your health, and the health of your sexual partners, is to use a cheap, readily available form of contraception that also protects against sexually transmissible infections (STIs).
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Melanoma March celebrates Melanoma Institute Australia’s major annual fundraising campaign. Each Melanoma March brings together melanoma patients, their families, and local communities to raise awareness and funds for research to reach our goal of zero deaths from melanoma – a goal we believe we can reach this decade.
March is Endometriosis Awareness Month.
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.
The March Charge is a fun, personal fitness challenge that has an enormous impact on how cancer is researched and treated. Just by walking or running for Cancer Council this March, and by raising funds you can help us Charge ahead with research and support services. Choose to Charge solo or get your friends, family, or colleagues together and do it as a team – it’s up to you.
1 March to 31 March –
Endometriosis Awareness Month
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.
Clean Up Australia inspires and empowers communities to clean up, fix up and conserve our environment.
More than 20 million Aussies have participated in Clean Up Australia activities and events over the past three decades.
Over that time Clean Up Australia has evolved to provide practical solutions to help all Australians live more sustainably every day of the year, and emerged as one of the country’s most recognised, credible and trusted environmental charities.
Each year, on March 9th, the National Network of Women Living with HIV celebrate the lives of women with HIV in Australia. We use this day to educate the wider community that HIV does affect women in Australia and to speak to our network about issues of importance.
World Kidney Day is a global campaign aimed at raising awareness of the importance of our kidneys.
World Kidney Day comes back every year. All across the globe many hundred events take place from public screenings in Argentina to Zumba marathons in Malaysia. We do it all to create awareness. Awareness about preventive behaviors, awareness about risk factors, and awareness about how to live with a kidney disease.
We do this because we want kidney health for all.
World Kidney Day is a joint initiative of the International Society of Nephrology (ISN) and the International Federation of Kidney Foundations – World Kidney Alliance (IFKF-WKA).
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.
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.
Coeliac Awareness Week (CAW) is held annually on 13-20 March. The national campaign is Coeliac Australia’s premier event of the year that aims to raise awareness of coeliac disease and increase testing and diagnosis rates in Australia.
13 March to 19 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.
Around one million Australians have a swallowing difficulty. Swallowing problems can occur at any stage of life. However, the knowledge of dysphagia and its implications remain largely unknown for most Australians.
Swallowing Awareness Day is an opportunity to bring attention to swallowing disorders and to connect people with speech pathologists, the professionals who can help.
We have known for some time now that too much salt can harm our health, leading to unnecessary deaths from heart attacks and strokes. Salt reduction has been a feature of UK food policy for two decades, and is accepted globally as a cost effective strategy to improve public health.
The UK’s salt reduction model has inspired the world and to date, more than 90 countries now have some form of salt reduction policy in place.
Salt reduction policies targeted specifically at the food industry are necessary and proportional: three quarters of the salt the nation eats each day is already in packaged and prepared foods. This cannot be removed by the consumer, so simply telling people to eat less salt will not work when our food is full of it.
Blood cancer is Australia’s hidden cancer crisis. Every day, 53 Aussies are diagnosed with blood cancer, and 16 will lose their life. People with blood cancer need you now more than ever.
You have the power to take action, and raise crucial funds that will give families facing blood cancer all the support and information they need – while driving breakthrough research projects discovering better ways to diagnose and treat blood cancer.
By signing up to World’s Greatest Shave, you’ll be changing the lives of those who need your help most and it might change yours along the way.
Now that’s something worth raising your clippers, scissors or hair dye to.
Islamophobia is a fear, prejudice and hatred of Muslims that leads to provocation, hostility and intolerance by means of threatening, harassment, abuse, incitement and intimidation of Muslims and non-Muslims, both in the online and offline world. Motivated by institutional, ideological, political and religious hostility that transcends into structural and cultural racism, it targets the symbols and markers of being a Muslim.
The United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution sponsored by 60 Member-States of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), which designated 15 March as the International Day to Combat Islamophobia. The document stresses that terrorism and violent extremism cannot and should not be associated with any religion, nationality, civilization, or ethnic group. It calls for a global dialogue on the promotion of a culture of tolerance and peace, based on respect for human rights and for the diversity of religions and belief.
Marking the first International Day to Combat Islamophobia in 2021, UN Secretary-General António Guterres pointed out that anti-Muslim bigotry is part of a larger trend of a resurgence in ethno-nationalism, neo-Nazism, stigma and hate speech targeting vulnerable populations including Muslims, Jews, some minority Christian communities, as well as others. “As the Holy Quran reminds us: nations and tribes were created to know one another. Diversity is a richness, not a threat,” he added.
In response to the alarming trend of rising hate speech around the world, Secretary-General António Guterres launched the United Nations Strategy and Plan of Action on Hate Speech.
Close the Gap is a social justice ” peoples ” campaign that was launched in April 2007 . The Campaign was launched following Professor Tom Calma’s 2005 Social Justice report which emphasised health as a human right. And the signing of the “Statement of Intent” with the Australian Government.
Global Recycling Day was created in 2018 to help recognise, and celebrate, the importance recycling plays in preserving our precious primary resources and securing the future of our planet. It is a day for the world to come together and put the planet first.
The mission of Global Recycling Day, as set out by the Global Recycling Foundation, is twofold: 1. To tell world leaders that recycling is simply too important not to be a global issue, and that a common, joined up approach to recycling is urgently needed.
2. To ask people across the planet to think resource, not waste, when it comes to the goods around us – until this happens, we simply won’t award recycled goods the true value and repurpose they deserve.
19 March to 26 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.
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.
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.
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.
20 March to 26 March –
National Advance Care Planning Week
National Advance Care Planning WeekTM encourages you, regardless of your age or health status, to make your future health care preferences known.
Our campaign challenges everyone to discuss what living well means to you and to consider who you would want to speak for you, if you could no longer communicate or make your own health care decisions. It’s been successful in starting tough but important conversations across the country.
We hope you will be able to help us build awareness during National Advance Care Planning Week, which will run between 20 – 26 March.
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 Discrimination
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
April Is Parkinson’s Awareness Month
April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month with World Parkinson’s Day recognised on 11 April each year
Today in Australia, 37 people will hear the words ‘you have Parkinson’s’ for the very first time. That’s more than one person every hour, of every 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.
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.
Youth Homelessness Matters Day (YHMD) has been an exciting campaign since its inception in 1990. Started by a group of social advocates who believed that too many young people were moving out of home with nowhere to go, the day has since grown into a national celebration of young people’s resilience.
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.
For this International Mother Earth Day, let’s remimd 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!
We lose 45 Australians to lung disease and lung cancer every day. Anyone can be affected, no matter your age or background. It’s never too late to start looking after your lungs. Take the time to check your lung health this Lung Health Awareness Month.
The May 50K is a virtual fitness and fundraising challenge to help you achieve your health and fitness goals. You can take part in your own time, at your own pace and in and around your local area.
All funds raised will support life-changing research into the prevention, treatment and finding a cure for multiple sclerosis.
1 May to 31 May –
Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Month
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.
Funds raised from Tracky Dack Day will provide practical relief to sick kids and their families.
No sick child should be put on a waiting list to get help. No child should be excluded on the basis of their illness, disability or age. No family should go without support in times of crisis.
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.
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.
Air pollution, from traffic exhaust to your gas cook-top, can be damaging our lungs and your general health. When we breathe in certain air pollutants, the risk of developing conditions like asthma, heart or lung disease and cancer can increase.
World Hand Hygiene Day aims to maintain global promotion, visibility and sustainability of hand hygiene in health care and to bring people together in support of hand hygiene improvement around the world.
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.
May 6th is #NoDietDay, an annual social media campaign to encourage the rejection of diet culture. This movement, started by Mary Evans Young in 1992, celebrates the importance of body acceptance, diversity, and respect for all body shapes and sizes.
7 May to 13 May –
International Compost Awareness Week
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.
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.
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.
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 Awareness Day for Chronic Immunological and Neurological Diseases (CIND)
Welcome to the home for May 12th International Awareness Day information. 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).
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.
Wednesday 17 May, 2023 is Wear Orange Wednesday or ‘WOW Day’. On this day we encourage communities across Australia to wear orange and thank all SES volunteers who generously give their time to help communities during flood and storm emergencies.
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.
Australia has the highest incidence of food allergy in the world, and it’s growing at a rapid rate. We estimate that there are 800,000 Australians with a diagnosed food allergy, and many more undiagnosed.
Food Allergy Week is an initiative of A&AA and is dedicated to promoting community understanding of food allergy to help protect those 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.
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.
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.
Kidney Health Week aims to raise awareness about kidney disease in Australia. Kidney disease has a big impact on Australians; it is the 10th most common cause of death in Australia. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, over 50 people die from kidney related disease every day.
25 May to 31 May –
International Thyroid Awareness Week
International Thyroid Awareness Week (ITAW), celebrated each year from May 25th to 31th, is an annual campaign that aims at raising awareness of early recognition and adequate treatment of thyroid disorders to prevent further complications.
Every year on 26 May, National Sorry Day remembers and acknowledges the mistreatment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who were forcibly removed from their families and communities, which we now know as ‘The Stolen Generations’.
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.
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.
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.
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 30 June –
Bowel Cancer Awareness Month and Red Apple Day
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 the best care for everyone affected by bowel cancer.
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.
Every June, Pride Month celebrates the diversity of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex community. It’s a time to reflect on just how far civil rights have progressed in half a century and an opportunity to protest discrimination and violence. Australia is at the forefront of the push towards true equality and inclusion for LGBTI people, but there is more to do.
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.
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.
This year, World Heart Rhythm Week runs from the 6-12th of June, with the goal of spreading awareness of arrhythmias to our community and healthcare professionals.
An arrhythmia is classified as an abnormal heart rhythm, when the heart beats too fast (tachycardia), too slow (bradycardia), or irregular in its pace. The condition is caused by incorrectly functioning electrical impulses within the heart; however, arrhythmias can affect even a perfectly healthy heart.
Heart arrhythmias are categorised by the speed of the heart rate and the term arrhythmia covers a broad range of more specific conditions.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Over 8.3 million Australians will need blood in their lifetime. When you give blood, you’re more than just a donor. You’re the Lifeblood of your community. Your football team. Your family. Your book club. Your neighbourhood.
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.
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.
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.
National Stomal Therapy Week (NSTW) is designed to both acknowledge and provide support to people living with a stoma and recognise those health professionals and support agencies involved in their care.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Go Dry this July for Ovarian Cancer Australia
You’ll be helping Ovarian Cancer Australia continue to provide a range of specialist psychological, practical and emotional support services for women and families affected by ovarian cancer.
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.
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.
In 2014, the United Nations General Assembly declared 15 July as World Youth Skills Day, to celebrate the strategic importance of equipping young people with skills for employment, decent work and entrepreneurship.
Since then, World Youth Skills Day has provided a unique opportunity for dialogue between young people, technical and vocational education and training (TVET) institutions, firms, employers’ and workers’ organizations, policy-makers and development partners.
World 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 to offer life-saving solutions to prevent it.
World Hepatitis Day 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.
Alopecia Areata is an autoimmune condition that causes hair loss. It can affect anyone at any age, but most commonly occurs during childhood. There is no cure, and the condition can be life-long. Around half a million Australians will be impacted by this condition in their lives, and yet many people have not heard of it.
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.
MS Readathon challenges kids to read as much as they can in August.
All funds raised provide vital support services to families with multiple sclerosis.
It’s an epic adventure for an incredible cause. Your kids will love it!
An annual campaign that empowers Australians at all stages of life to
live and die well.
During August, people hold events, gatherings at home, take individual action, and much more, all to improve their knowledge around choice at end of life.
Reading can take kids on incredible journeys of discovery, awakens their imagination, and builds their confidence. It is never too early or too late to help them find inspiration and motivation to pick up a book.
The MS Readathon has been inspiring kids to read more for 45 years, and this August, it will be more fun than ever before.
World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) is one of the most important weeks in the Australian Breastfeeding Association’s calendar. From 1-7 August each year we join a global campaign to raise awareness among decision-makers, workplaces and the wider community about the importance of breastfeeding and its many benefits.
1 in 20 kids faces a birth defect or genetic disease, like cancer, cystic fibrosis, and life-threatening metabolic disorders. That’s 12 kids born every minute worldwide. Help us find treatments and cures by making a donation, buying gear or fundraising for us.
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.
Every year on the second Friday in August, we invite Australians everywhere to get silly for a serious cause to raise much needed funds to help stop little lives being cut short and support grieving families. More than 3,000 babies still die suddenly and unexpectedly each year in Australia. We are losing them to stillbirth, SIDS among other things.
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.
This day was designated in memory of the 19 August 2003 bomb attack on the Canal Hotel in Baghdad, Iraq, killing 22 people, including the chief humanitarian in Iraq, Sergio Vieira de Mello. Each year, WHD focuses on a theme, bringing together partners from across the humanitarian system to advocate for the survival, well-being and dignity of people affected by crises, and for the safety and security of aid workers.
21 August to 27 August –
Healthy Bones Action Week
This year’s initiative held from 21-27 August encourages Australians to think about their bone health. Primary school is a crucial time for Aussie kids to build strong bones for life and ensure their daily routine includes the three steps to maintaining good bone health.
Since 2010, the “Liptember” flagship fundraising campaign has encouraged people to wear lipstick throughout the month of September as a lighthearted and fun way to raise awareness and vital funds for women’s mental health, raising over $12 million to date.
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.
4 September to 10 September –
National Superhero Week
National Superhero Week for Muscular Dystrophy is a week-long event in which people across Australia dress up as their favourite superhero to raise money for a cure.
Heroes of all ages are encouraged to host an event during National Superhero Week from September 4-10, 2023. From kindergartens and schools, to workplaces and community groups. You are never too old to dress up!
“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.
6 September –
National Health and Physical Education Day
Australian school children rank among the worst in the world when it comes to their physical activity levels. To tackle this problem, they need to be taught skills and have better knowledge and understanding of how to lead active and healthy lifestyles.
That’s why National Health and Physical Education (HPE) Day has been designed to raise awareness of, and advocate for, a greater focus of HPE in our schools.
The theme of HPE day is Good for Children, Good for Schools and Good for Communities and in 2023 HPE day will be celebrated on Wednesday 6th September 2023!
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
Literacy provides a fundamental step of building context, comprehension and understanding, whether it is written, visual or auditory. For kids who miss that foundational step in their literacy journey, it has a lifelong impact.
In remote Communities across Australia there is often no infrastructure such as libraries or bookstores. Access to reading material is extremely limited and this impacts the achievements of Indigenous children.
ILF’s three programs, Book Supply, Book Buzz and Community Publishing Projects, focus on ensuring access to quality resources, including books in First Languages, publishing Community stories and supporting Communities and families to lead the entire process to ensure leadership, ownership, and authenticity is held with Community Elders and residents.
16 September –
International Day for 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.
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.
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.
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.
The UN General Assembly has proclaimed 23 September as the International Day of Sign Languages in order to raise awareness of the importance of sign language in the full realization of the human rights of people who are deaf.
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.
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.
In 1991, the General Assembly adopted the United Nations Principles for Older Persons (resolution 46/91). In 2002, the Second World Assembly on Ageing adopted the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing, to respond to the opportunities and challenges of population ageing in the 21st century and to promote the development of a society for all ages.
The composition of the world population has changed dramatically in recent decades. Between 1950 and 2010, life expectancy worldwide rose from 46 to 68 years. Globally, there were 703 million persons aged 65 or over in 2019. The region of Eastern and South-Eastern Asia was home to the largest number of older persons (261 million), followed by Europe and Northern America (over 200 million).
Over the next three decades, the number of older persons worldwide is projected to more than double, reaching more than 1.5 billion persons in 2050. All regions will see an increase in the size of the older population between 2019 and 2050. The largest increase (312 million) is projected to occur in Eastern and South-Eastern Asia, growing from 261 million in 2019 to 573 million in 2050.
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”.
The United Nations designated the first Monday of October of every year as World Habitat Day to reflect on the state of our habitats, and on the basic right of all to adequate shelter. The Day is also intended to remind the world that we all have the power and the responsibility to shape the future of our cities and towns.
In 1985 the United Nations designated the first Monday of October every year as World Habitat Day. The idea is to reflect on the state of our towns and cities and the basic right of all to adequate shelter. It is also intended to remind the world of its collective responsibility for the future of the human habitat.
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.
In a world characterized by an unprecedented level of economic development, technological means and financial resources, that millions of persons are living in extreme poverty is a moral outrage. Poverty is not solely an economic issue, but rather a multidimensional phenomenon that encompasses a lack of both income and the basic capabilities to live in dignity.
Persons living in poverty experience many interrelated and mutually reinforcing deprivations that prevent them from realizing their rights and perpetuate their poverty, including: – dangerous work conditions – unsafe housing – lack of nutritious food – unequal access to justice – lack of political power – limited access to health care.
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.”
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.
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.
World Toilet Day 2022 focuses on the impact of the sanitation crisis on groundwater.
This observance, held annually since 2013, celebrates toilets and raises awareness of the 3.6 billion people living without access to safely managed sanitation. It is about taking action to tackle the global sanitation crisis and achieve Sustainable Development Goal 6: sanitation and water for all by 2030.
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.
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.”
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.