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International Human Solidarity Day

The United Nations' (UN) International Human Solidarity Day is annually held on December 20 to celebrate unity in diversity. It also aims to remind people on the importance of solidarity in working towards eradicating poverty.

Paper doll people in shades of blue link hands while standing on top of the world

International Human Solidarity Day reminds people on the importance of solidarity in working towards eradicating poverty.

©iStockphoto.com/Trista Weibell

What Do People Do?

On International Human Solidarity Day, governments are reminded of their commitments to international agreements on the need for human solidarity as an initiative to fight against poverty. People are encouraged to debate on ways to promote solidarity and find innovative methods to help eradicate poverty.

Activities may include promoting campaigns on issues such as:

  • Banning land mines.
  • Making health and medication accessible to those in need.
  • Relief efforts to help those who suffered the effects of natural or human-made disasters.
  • Achieving universal education.
  • Fighting against poverty, corruption and terrorism.

The day is promoted through all forms of media including magazine articles, speeches at official events, and web blogs from groups, individuals or organizations committed to universal solidarity.

Public Life

International Human Solidarity Day is a global observance and not a public holiday.

Background

Solidarity refers to a union of interests, purposes or sympathies among members of a group. In the Millennium Declaration world leaders agreed that solidarity was a value that was important to international relations in the 21st century. In light of globalization and growing inequality, the UN realized that strong international solidarity and cooperation was needed to achieve its Millennium Development Goals. The UN was founded on the idea unity and harmony via the concept of collective security that relies on its members' solidarity to unite for international peace and security.

On December 22, 2005, the UN General Assembly proclaimed that International Solidarity Day would take place on December 20 each year. The event aimed to raise people's awareness of the importance of advancing the international development agenda and promoting global understanding of the value of human solidarity. The assembly felt that the promotion of a culture of solidarity and the spirit of sharing was important in combating poverty.

Symbols

The UN emblem may be found in material promoting International Human Solidarity Day. The emblem consists of a projection of the globe centered on the North Pole. It depicts all continents except Antarctica and four concentric circles representing degrees of latitude. The projection is surrounded by images of olive branches, representing peace. The emblem is often blue, although it is printed in white on a blue background on the UN flag.

International Human Solidarity Day Observances

YearWeekdayDateNameHoliday Type
2010MonDec 20International Human Solidarity DayUnited Nations observance
2011TueDec 20International Human Solidarity DayUnited Nations observance
2012ThuDec 20International Human Solidarity DayUnited Nations observance
2013FriDec 20International Human Solidarity DayUnited Nations observance
2014SatDec 20International Human Solidarity DayUnited Nations observance
2015SunDec 20International Human Solidarity DayUnited Nations observance
2016TueDec 20International Human Solidarity DayUnited Nations observance
2017WedDec 20International Human Solidarity DayUnited Nations observance
2018ThuDec 20International Human Solidarity DayUnited Nations observance
2019FriDec 20International Human Solidarity DayUnited Nations observance
2020SunDec 20International Human Solidarity DayUnited Nations observance

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