The United Nations General Assembly designates a number of "International Days" to mark important aspects of human life and history (the comprehensive list of all days celebrated by the United Nations and its Specialized Agencies is available here: International Days).Each international day offers many actors the opportunity to organize activities related to the theme of the day. Organizations and offices of the United Nations system, and most importantly, governments, civil society, the public and private sectors, schools, universities and, more generally, citizens, make an international day a springboard for awareness-raising actions.
United Nations Specialized Agencies, including UNESCO, can also proclaim World Days. In this case, the proclamation of international days depends on their governing bodies and internal regulations only.
UNESCO thus celebrates UN International Days related to its fields of competence, in addition to the other World Days, proclaimed by the Organization's governing bodies or other institutions.
The list of official messages by the Director-General of UNESCO on the occasion of International Days with which UNESCO is associated is available here.
International Days observed at UNESCO
- International Day of Education ( A/RES/73/25)
- International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust
( 34 C/61; A/RES/60/7) - UN website
- World Poetry Day ( 30 C/29) - UN website
- International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
( 14 C/11; A/RES/2142 (XXI)) - UN website
- International Day of Nowruz ( 184 EX/SR.1-9; A/RES/64/253) - UN website
- World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development
( 166 EX/37; A/RES/57/249) - UN website
- International Day for Biosphere Reserves ( 41C/37)
Third Thursday in November
- International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women
( 159 EX/28; A/RES/54/134) - UN website