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International Awareness Days and Weeks in November 2021

With so many things going on around the world, we must raise awareness of these issues concerning us and the people on this planet. One such way of doing so is by observing international days and weeks that are occasions held to educate the public on issues of concern. These Awareness days are commemorated “to mobilize political will and resources to address global problems, and to celebrate and reinforce achievements of humanity,” says the UN.

We have compiled a long list of all the Awareness Days marked in November 2021 that you should know of to help bring about a change.

 

November 2, 2021 – Tuesday

International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists (UN)

The United Nations General Assembly recognizes and proclaims November 2 as the ‘International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists’ in General Assembly Resolution A/RES/68/163. The Resolution urged the Member States to implement definite measures countering the present culture of impunity. It condemns all attacks and violence against journalists and media workers.

This day is observed annually to draw attention to the low conviction rate for violent crimes against journalists and media workers around the world. They chose this date (November 2) in commemoration of the assassination of two French journalists in Mali on 2 November 2013. The landmark resolution also urges the Member States to do their utmost to prevent violence against journalists and media workers.

It encourages them “to ensure accountability, brings to justice perpetrators of crimes against journalists and media workers, and ensure that victims have access to appropriate remedies” as per the UN website. Furthermore, the UN website states that the resolution calls upon States to promote a safe and enabling environment for journalists to perform their work independently and without undue interference.

Visit the UN website to learn more about ‘International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists’: HERE

 

November 4, 2021 – Thursday

International Day Against Violence and Bullying at School, including Cyberbullying

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This year UNESCO marks the ‘International Day Against Violence and Bullying at School Including Cyberbullying’ on Thursday 4 November 2021 under the theme “Tackling cyberbullying and other forms of online violence involving children and young people”.

The UNESCO Member States declared the first Thursday of November (this year on November 4) as this Awareness Day that recognizes that school-related violence “in all its forms is an infringement of children and adolescents’ rights to education as well as to health and well-being”.

‘International Day Against Violence and Bullying at School Including Cyberbullying’ calls upon the Member States, UN partners, other relevant international and regional organizations, as well as civil society, to help promote, celebrate, and facilitate the international day. It also includes non-governmental organizations, individuals, and other stakeholders.

This Day “calls on global awareness of the problem of online violence and cyberbullying, its consequences and the need to put an end to it” as per their website. According to UNESCO, it calls on the attention of people such as “students, parents, members of the educational community, education authorities and a range of sectors and partners, including the tech industry, to encourage everyone to take a part in preventing online violence for the safety and wellbeing of children and youth”.

Visit the UNESCO website to learn more about ‘International Day Against Violence and Bullying at School Including Cyberbullying’: HERE

 

November 5, 2021 – Friday

World Tsunami Awareness Day

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By the year 2030, an estimated fifty percent of the world’s population will live in coastal areas exposed to flooding, storms, and tsunamis, according to the United Nations. It will be helpful to build more resilience and protect the populations at risk if plans and policies are in place to reduce the horrible impacts of tsunamis. Therefore, in December 2015, the UN General Assembly designated 5 November as World Tsunami Awareness Day.

As per UN, it “calls on countries, international bodies and civil society to raise tsunami awareness and share innovative approaches to risk reduction”. Japan came up with the idea for this Awareness Day as it has had a bitter and repetitive experience of tsunamis. This experience has over the years “built up major expertise in areas such as tsunami early warning, public action and building back better after a disaster to reduce future impacts” according to the website.

United Nations states that “UN Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) facilitates the observance of World Tsunami Awareness Day in collaboration with the rest of the United Nations system.” Although tsunamis are rare events, they can be extremely deadly. The highest number of deaths in the past hundred years was in the Indian Ocean tsunami of December 2004 that caused an estimated 227,000 fatalities in fourteen countries, with Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, and Thailand hardest-hit.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘World Tsunami Awareness Day’: HERE

 

World Day of Romani Language

UNESCO proclaimed the ‘World Day of Romani Language’ in 2015 to promote the preservation of the Romani language as Ms. Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO, said on 5 November 2019 on the occasion of World Day of Romani Language: “‘Language alone protects us from the scariness of things with no names. Language alone is meditation.’ Those words, by the late Toni Morrisson, tell us how a language cannot be reduced to the words that comprise it or to meanings supposedly equivalent from one language to another.”

“It is an experience of the world, a symbolic universe containing knowledge, stories, cultures, identities, and ways of seeing, living, and feeling,” Azoulay added. This day is observed “to promote the culture, improve the well-being of Romani people, and recognize the importance of all languages, whose diversity is a source of strength for all societies to share, as per UNESCO.

Visit the UNESCO website to learn more about the ‘World Day of Romani Language’: HERE

 

November 6, 2021 – Saturday

International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has found that over the last sixty years, at least forty percent of all internal conflicts have been linked to the exploitation of natural resources. These include high-value resources such as timber, diamonds, gold, and oil, or scarce resources such as fertile land and water. Moreover, the conflicts involving natural resources have also been found to be twice as likely to relapse, as per the United Nations website.

Therefore, according to the UN, on 5 November 2001, the UN General Assembly declared 6 November of each year as the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict (A/RES/56/4).

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict’: HERE

 

November 9, 2021 – Tuesday to November 15, 2021 – Monday

International Week of Science and Peace

The International Week of Science and Peace was first observed in 1986. It was observed as part of the observance of the International Year of Peace and based on the success of this occasion, the organizers continued their efforts in the following years.

In recognition of the value of the annual observance, the General Assembly adopted resolution 43/61 in December 1988, which proclaimed the “International Week of Science and Peace”, to take place each year during the week in which 11 November falls, according to the United Nations website.

The annual observance of this day is making an important contribution to the promotion of peace as it encourages greater academic exchanges on a subject of universal importance while also generating greater awareness of the relationship of science and peace among the general public, as per the UN.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘International Week of Science and Peace’: HERE

 

November 10, 2021 – Wednesday

World Science Day for Peace and Development

UNESCO proclaimed this day in 2001. ‘World Science Day for Peace and Development’ has generated many concrete projects, programs, and funding for science around the world and according to the United Nations. It has also “helped foster cooperation between scientists living in regions marred by conflict”.

‘World Science Day for Peace and Development’ is celebrated every year on 10 November. It “highlights the significant role of science in society and the need to engage the wider public in debates on emerging scientific issues and also underlines the importance and relevance of science in our daily lives,” as per the UN website.

By linking science more closely with society, the day aims to ensure that citizens are kept informed of developments in science as well as underscores the role scientists play in expanding our understanding of the outstanding, exceptional, fragile planet we call home. It also helps in making our societies more sustainable.

“The current crisis should serve as a wake-up call regarding the urgency for increased financing and support of scientific research and collaboration. This concerns not only the natural sciences but also the social and human and sciences,” said UNESCO Director General’s Message.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘World Science Day for Peace and Development’: HERE

 

November 13, 2021 – Saturday – November 19, 2021 – Friday

World Antibiotic Awareness Week

The World Antimicrobial Awareness Week (WAAW) is observed annually. WAAV aims to increase awareness of global antimicrobial resistance. According to WHO, it is celebrated to encourage best practices among the general public, health workers, and policymakers to avoid the further emergence and spread of drug-resistant infections.

“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”. And one of the key objectives of the plan is to “improve awareness and understanding of antimicrobial resistance through effective communication, education and training” as per WHO.

visit the WHO website to learn more about the ‘World Antibiotic Awareness Week’: HERE

 

November 14, 2021 – Sunday

World Diabetes Day

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

According to the UN, an estimated 422 million adults were living with diabetes in 2014 worldwide, compared to 108 million in 1980. This global prevalence of diabetes has nearly doubled since 1980, rising from 4.7% to 8.5% in the adult population. The resolution also encouraged the Member States to develop national policies for the prevention, treatment, and care of diabetes in line with the sustainable development of their healthcare systems as the disease is “a major cause of blindness, kidney failure, heart attack, stroke, and lower limb amputation”.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘World Diabetes Day’: HERE

 

International Day against Illicit Trafficking in Cultural Property

The  International  Day against  Illicit  Trafficking in  Cultural Property is observed on 14 November every year. It reminds the world that theft, looting, and illicit trafficking of cultural property “takes place in every country, robbing people of their culture, identity, and history and that we have to work together to combat this crime” according to UNESCO.

Illicitly traded cultural property is often transferred either through illicit markets worldwide such as auctions, including through the Internet, and to prevent this, people, governments, the art market, and institutions can help in this fight by raising awareness. They can help by being informed and ethical when buying and selling art and cultural objects, enacting and respecting laws, and protecting cultural heritage and property.

According to their website, UNESCO first adopted 14 November as the International Day against Illicit Trafficking in Cultural Property during its 40th General Conference in 2019. They aimed to draw more attention to this crime and the ways to combat it.

UNESCO also intended to highlight the importance of international cooperation and proactive measures through the Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property (1970). This Convention “provides an international framework for the prevention of theft and looting and the return and return of the stolen cultural property, in parallel with other advances in the fight against illicit trafficking”, as per the UN.

Visit the UNESCO website to learn more about International  Day  against  Illicit  Trafficking  in  Cultural Property: HERE

 

November 16, 2021 – Tuesday

International Day for Tolerance

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According to the UN, in 1996, the UN General Assembly (by resolution 51/95) invited UN Member States to observe the International Day for Tolerance on 16 November. For the day’s fiftieth anniversary on 16 November 1995, UNESCO’s Member States adopted a Declaration of Principles on Tolerance which, among other things, affirms that “tolerance 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,” said the UN website.

Tunisian essayist Albert Memmi, who passed away this year, wrote that “tolerance is an exercise and a victory over ourselves”. His words teach us that tolerance, far from being a passive attitude tantamount to complacency or indifference, is a dynamic, daily effort, made both individually and collectively,” said Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO on the occasion of the International Day for Tolerance.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘International Day for Tolerance’: HERE

 

November 18, 2021 – Thursday (Third Thursday of November)

World Philosophy Day

In 2005 the UNESCO General Conference proclaimed that World Philosophy Day would be celebrated every third Thursday of November and in establishing this day they strive to “promote an international culture of philosophical debate that respects human dignity and diversity” as per UNESCO.

The World Philosophy Day encourages academic exchange and highlights the contribution of philosophical knowledge in addressing global issues and underlines the “enduring value of philosophy for the development of human thought, for each culture and for each individual”, as per UNESCO website. As per UNESCO, “UNESCO leads World Philosophy Day – but does not own it. It belongs to everyone, everywhere, who cares about philosophy.”

Visit the UNESCO website to learn more about the ‘World Philosophy Day’: HERE

 

International Day of Islamic Art

The International Day of Islamic Art was proclaimed at the 40th session of the UNESCO General Conference in 2019, according to the UNESCO website. This day is observed every year on 18 November and it aims to raise awareness of past and contemporary artistic expressions of Islam. Furthermore, it intends to make people aware of the contribution of culture through Islamic Art to civilization.

The global celebration of the day encourages the appreciation of Islamic art, which has inspired other artistic movements. It also contributes to cultural diversity, freedom of expression, protection of cultural heritage and intercultural dialogue, as per UNESCO. According to their website, marking the Day is also “a way to foster tolerance between peoples and support cultural rapprochement, both of which are possible through the power of art”.

Visit the UNESCO website to learn more about the ‘International Day of Islamic Art’: HERE

 

November 19, 2021 – Friday

World Toilet Day

‘World Toilet Day’ is held on November 19. The day is about celebrating toilets, raising awareness of the 4.2 billion people living without access to safely managed sanitation. ‘World Toilet Day’ is about taking action to tackle the global sanitation crisis and achieve Sustainable Development Goal 6: water and sanitation for all by 2030, as per the UN.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘World Toilet Day’: HERE

 

November 20, 2021 – Saturday

Africa Industrialization Day

According to the UN website, the United Nations General Assembly, in 1989, proclaimed 20 November as “Africa Industrialization Day”. Since then, the United Nations System has held events on that day globally to “raise awareness about the importance of Africa’s industrialization and the challenges faced by the continent,” as per the UN.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘Africa Industrialization Day’: HERE

 

World Children’s Day

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First established in 1954 as Universal Children’s Day, ‘World Children’s Day’ is celebrated on November 20. According to the UN, the day is celebrated on 20 November each year to promote international togetherness, awareness among children worldwide, improving children’s welfare. It is also an important date as the UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child on the same day in 1959.

November 20 is also the date in 1989 when the UN General Assembly adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

“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,” says the UN website.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘World Children’s Day’: HERE

 

November 21, 2021 – Sunday

World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims

WHO launched a Global status report on road safety in December 2018, as per the UN website. This report highlighted that the number of road traffic deaths per year has reached 1.35 million. Road traffic injuries are now the leading killer of people aged five to twenty-nine years and this burden is disproportionately borne by pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists.

A higher proportion of these deaths in particular occur among those living in developing countries. The observance of the ‘World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims’ in accordance with the General Assembly has extended to an increasing number of countries on every continent.

This Day has become an important tool in global efforts to reduce road casualties as well as offers an opportunity for drawing attention to the scale of the emotional and economic devastation caused by road crashes. It gives recognition to the suffering of road crash victims and the work of support and rescue services.

Furthermore, a dedicated website was launched to make the Day more widely known. This website links countries through sharing common objectives and  also in the remembrance of people killed and injured in crashes.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims’: HERE
Visit the ‘World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims’: HERE

 

World Television Day

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The United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 21 November as World Television Day in recognition of the increasing influence television has on decision-making. Television has helped bring world attention to conflicts and threats to peace and security.

It has played a potential role in sharpening the focus on other major issues, that include economic and social issues. The Day is not so much about the celebration of the television as a tool. ‘World Television Day’ celebrates the philosophy the television represents and acknowledges its ability to inform, channel, and affect public opinion.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘World Television Day’: HERE

 

November 25, 2021 – Thursday

International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

Another pandemic has emerged along with the novel coronavirus, as data and reports from those on the front lines have shown that all types of violence against women and girls, particularly domestic violence, have intensified in this period which the UN calls the “Shadow Pandemic”.

According to the UN website, 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.”

The adverse psychological, sexual, and reproductive health consequences of VAWG affect women at all stages of their life. While gender-based violence can happen to anyone, anywhere, some women and girls are particularly vulnerable, according to the United Nations.

This includes young girls and older women, women who identify as lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or intersex, as per the UN website. Migrants and refugees, indigenous women and ethnic minorities, or women and girls living with HIV and disabilities, and those living through humanitarian crises are also particularly vulnerable to this violence.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women’: HERE
Visit the UN Women website: HERE
To donate to UN Women, click: HERE

 

November 26, 2021 – Friday

World Olive Tree Day

The olive tree, specifically the olive branch, holds an important place in the minds of men and women as it has been a symbol of peace, wisdom, and harmony since ancient times. The noble tree is not only important to the countries where they grow, but also to people, communities around the world. Therefore the ‘World Olive Tree Day’ was proclaimed at the 40th session of the UNESCO General Conference in 2019, as per the UNESCO website.

It takes place on 26 November every year and the aim of the Day is to encourage the protection of the olive tree as well as the values it embodies. It is also observed to appreciate its important social, cultural, economic, and environmental significance to humanity.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘World Olive Tree Day’: HERE

 

November 29, 2021 – Monday

International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People

According to the United Nations website, the General Assembly called for the annual observance of 29 November as the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People (resolution 32/40 B) and on that day in 1947, the Assembly adopted the resolution on the partition of Palestine (resolution 181 (II)). The resolution on the observance of this day also encourages Member States to continue to give the widest support and publicity to the observance of the Day of Solidarity, as per the website.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People’: HERE

 

November 30, 2021 – Tuesday

Day of Remembrance for all Victims of Chemical Warfare

The history of the serious efforts to achieve chemical disarmament that culminated in the conclusion of the Chemical Weapons Convention began over a century ago as these weapons were used on a massive scale during World War I. The use of chemical weapons resulted in more than 100,000 fatalities and a million casualties.

This Chemical Weapons Convention entered into force on 29 April 1997 and was adopted in 1993 determined, “for the sake of all mankind, to exclude completely the possibility of the use of chemical weapons,” (Preamble) as per the UN website.

According to their website, the Conference of the States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention, at its 20th Session, decided that “a memorial Day of Remembrance for all Victims of Chemical Warfare would be observed on 30 November each year or, when appropriate, on the first day of the regular session of the Conference.”

It provides an opportunity to pay tribute to the victims of chemical warfare. This commemoration also offers a chance to reaffirm the commitment of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to eliminate the threat of chemical weapons, thereby promoting the goals of peace, security, and multilateralism, as per the UN.

Visit the UN website to learn more about the ‘Day of Remembrance for all Victims of Chemical Warfare’: HERE

 

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