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International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

The United Nations’ (UN) International Day for the Eradication of Poverty is observed on October 17 each year since 1993. It promotes people’s awareness of the need to eradicate poverty and destitution worldwide, particularly in developing countries.

The International Day for the Eradication of Poverty promotes awareness of the need to eradicate poverty worldwide.

©iStockphoto.com/VikramRaghuvanshi

What Do People Do?

Various non-government organizations and community charities support the Day for the Eradication of Poverty by actively calling for country leaders and governments to make the fight against poverty a central part of foreign policy. Other activities may include signing “Call to action” petitions, organizing concerts and cultural events, and holding interfaith gatherings that may include a moment of silence.

Public Life

The International Day for the Eradication of Poverty is a global observance and not a public holiday.

Background

The observance of the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty can be traced back to October 17, 1987. On that date, more than 100,000 people gathered in Paris, France, to honor the victims of extreme poverty, violence and hunger. Since that moment, individuals and organizations worldwide observed October 17 as a day to renew their commitment in collaborating towards eradicating poverty. In December, 1992, the UN General Assembly officially declared October 17 as the date for the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty (resolution 47/196 of December 22, 1992).

In December 1995, the UN General Assembly proclaimed the First United Nations Decade for the Eradication of Poverty (1997–2006), following the Copenhagen Social Summit. At the Millennium Summit in 2000, world leaders committed themselves to cutting by half the number of people living in extreme poverty by the year 2015.

Symbols

The United Nations Postal Administration previously issued six commemorative stamps and a souvenir card on the theme “We Can End Poverty”.  These stamps and the souvenir card featured drawings or paintings of people, particularly children, working together in the fight against poverty. Many of these images used strong colors and contrasts.  These stamps resulted from an art competition where six designs were selected from more than 12,000 children from 124 countries.

Note: Although the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty was first officially celebrated by the UN in 1993, many people around the world celebrated the day annually on October 17 since 1987.

External Links

World Day for Poverty Eradication Observances

YearWeekdayDateNameHoliday Type
2010SunOct 17World Day for Poverty EradicationUnited Nations observance
2011MonOct 17World Day for Poverty EradicationUnited Nations observance
2012WedOct 17World Day for Poverty EradicationUnited Nations observance
2013ThuOct 17World Day for Poverty EradicationUnited Nations observance
2014FriOct 17World Day for Poverty EradicationUnited Nations observance
2015SatOct 17World Day for Poverty EradicationUnited Nations observance
2016MonOct 17World Day for Poverty EradicationUnited Nations observance
2017TueOct 17World Day for Poverty EradicationUnited Nations observance
2018WedOct 17World Day for Poverty EradicationUnited Nations observance
2019ThuOct 17World Day for Poverty EradicationUnited Nations observance
2020SatOct 17World Day for Poverty EradicationUnited Nations observance

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