Universal Children’s Day

When is Universal Children’s Day?

Universal Children’s Day is an annual holiday aimed at celebrating the happiness and well-being of children across the globe. Also simply called “Children’s Day,” the holiday also recognizes and calls attention to children’s rights. It is observed every November 20th in many countries, although some nations choose different dates.

History

Universal Children’s Day was first introduced by the United Nations General Assembly on December 14, 1954. The purpose was to help children increase awareness of other people their age across the world to establish understanding and empathy. Many nations were quick to adopt the holiday. The U.N. chose November 20th as the date for Universal Children’s Day, although other nations can celebrate it on other days as seen fit.

Other major events have tied into the holiday. For example, the United Nations passed the Declaration of the Rights of Child and the Convention on the Rights of the Child on November 20th on 1959 and 1989, respectively. In turn, these actions helped to transform Universal Children’s Day into a holiday that both celebrates and fights for the rights of children.

Differences in Dates

November 20th is the official date chosen by the United Nations for Universal Children’s Day. During the General Assembly session in December 1954, the United Nations declared the date as Children’s Day, but also encouraged countries to choose a date that was the best fit for them. This is why most countries celebrate Children’s Day every November 20th, but others still have variations on the holiday.

The United States recognizes Universal Children’s Day, but also has a different date to celebrate the holiday. Instead, National Child’s Day is celebrated in June.  It is not a public holiday, which means that the government remains open. However, many government institutions, such as the White House, may participate in special celebrations surrounding the holiday.

Other nations choose to celebrate Universal Children’s Day on different dates. For example, Thailand recognizes Children’s Day on the second Saturday in January, and South Africa recognizes the holiday during the first Saturday in November. No matter what the date, November 20th is still the one most recognized and celebrated by the United Nations. This is also the time where most of the campaigning takes place for action to promote children’s rights.

Celebrations and Action

Universal Children’s Day is a date of celebrating the children around the world. This gives kids a great opportunity to learn about other children outside of their own country. Not only can this heighten culture awareness, but it can also transform into future incentives to take social action.

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is the subset of the United Nations that is primarily responsible for carrying out Universal Children’s Day awareness and action. While the goal is to celebrate children worldwide, there are many other serious aspects of the holiday to consider. From UNICEF’s standpoint, this is an ideal time to raise awareness about issues concerning the rights of children. This includes forced labor, abuse, and trafficking, as well as the denial of education and basic health services. By raising awareness, we can take action to make sure that all children can get the help they deserve and have a fair shot at life.

UNICEF is also known for tackling other issues surrounding children’s health on Universal Children’s Day, such as breastfeeding and access to immunizations.



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