Home > Calendar > Holidays > International Day of the World's Indigenous People

International Day of the World's Indigenous People

Quick Facts

The United Nations’ (UN) International Day of the World's Indigenous People is observed on August 9 each year to promote and protect the rights of the world’s indigenous peoples.

Local names

NameLanguage
International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleEnglish
Día Internacional de las Poblaciones IndígenasSpanish
היום הבינלאומי של העמים הילידים בעולםHebrew
اليوم الدولي للشعوب الأصلية في العالمArabic
세계 원주민의 날Korean
Internationaler Tag der indigenen VölkerGerman

International Day of the World's Indigenous People 2014

Saturday, August 9, 2014

International Day of the World's Indigenous People 2015

Sunday, August 9, 2015
List of dates for other years

The United Nations’ (UN) International Day of the World's Indigenous People is observed on August 9 each year to promote and protect the rights of the world’s indigenous population. This event also recognizes the achievements and contributions that indigenous people make to improve world issues such as environmental protection.

Indigenous cultures across the planet are recognized on International Day of the World's Indigenous People.

Illustration based on artwork from ©iStockphoto.com/Darek Niedzieski/Nicolette Neish/Victor Maffe

What do people do?

People from different nations are encouraged to participate in observing the day to spread the UN’s message on indigenous peoples. Activities may include educational forums and classroom activities to gain an appreciation and a better understanding of indigenous peoples. Events may include messages from the UN secretary general and other key leaders, performances by indigenous artists, and panel discussions on reconciliation.

Public life

The UN’s International Day of the World's Indigenous People is a United Nations day of observance but it is not a public holiday.

Background

The International Day of the World’s Indigenous People is celebrated on August 9 each year to recognize the first UN Working Group on Indigenous Populations meeting in Geneva in 1982. On December 23, 1994, the UN General Assembly decided that the International Day of the World’s Indigenous People should be observed on August 9 annually during the International Decade of the World’s Indigenous People.

In 2004 the assembly proclaimed the Second International Decade of the World’s Indigenous People (2005-2014). The assembly also decided to continue observing the International Day of Indigenous People annually during the second decade. The decade’s goal was to further strengthen international cooperation for solving problems faced by indigenous peoples in areas such as culture, education, health, human rights, the environment, and social and economic development.

In April 2000, the Commission on Human Rights adopted a resolution to establish the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues that was endorsed by the Economic and Social Council. The forum’s mandate is to discuss indigenous issues related to culture, economic and social development, education, the environment, health and human rights.

Symbols

Artwork by Rebang Dewan, a Chackma boy from Bangladesh, was chosen as the visual identifier of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. It has also been seen on material to promote the International Day of the World's Indigenous People. It features two ears of green leaves facing each other and cradling a globe resembling planet earth. Within the globe is a picture of a handshake (two different hands) in the middle and above the handshake is a landscape background. The handshake and the landscape background are encapsulated by blue at the top and bottom within the globe.

For this occasion, Rebang Dewan’s artwork is often seen together with a pale blue version of the UN logo with the words “We the peoples” written in the middle. The logo is set on a darker blue background. The UN logo is often associated with marketing and promotional material UN events. It features a projection of a world map (less Antarctica) centered on the North Pole, enclosed by olive branches. The olive branches symbolize peace and the world map represents people in the world.

International Day of the World's Indigenous People Observances

WeekdayDateYearNameHoliday typeWhere it is observed
WedAug 91995International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
FriAug 91996International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
SatAug 91997International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
SunAug 91998International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
MonAug 91999International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
WedAug 92000International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
ThuAug 92001International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
FriAug 92002International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
SatAug 92003International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
MonAug 92004International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
TueAug 92005International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
WedAug 92006International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
ThuAug 92007International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
SatAug 92008International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
SunAug 92009International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
MonAug 92010International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
TueAug 92011International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
ThuAug 92012International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
FriAug 92013International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
SatAug 92014International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
SunAug 92015International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
TueAug 92016International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
WedAug 92017International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
ThuAug 92018International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
FriAug 92019International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
SunAug 92020International Day of the World's Indigenous PeopleUnited Nations observance 
Advertising

Other calendars

Related links