International Human Rights Day, also known as the International Day of Human Rights, commemorates the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948.
This global observance serves as a reminder of the importance of human rights, emphasizing equality and dignity for all people.
International Human Rights Day is dedicated to promoting and safeguarding the fundamental rights and freedoms that are inherent in every human being.
It provides an opportunity to raise awareness about human rights issues and advocate for positive changes. The United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on December 10, 1948, in response to the atrocities witnessed during World War II and emphasizing that all human beings are born free and equal, entitled to equality and dignity.
War and conflict continue to create environments rife with human rights abuses. The Global Conflict Tracker notes 27 key locations around the world where instability and conflict are having a deep impact on communities.
The History & Founding of International Human Rights Day
The inception of International Human Rights Day dates to 1950 when the U.N. General Assembly passed a resolution urging all member states and interested organizations to observe December 10 each year as Human Rights Day.
The primary objective of this resolution was to:
• Celebrate human rights accomplishments.
• Raise awareness about persistent human rights challenges.
• Foster further progress in the global promotion and protection of human rights.
On International Human Rights Day, the High Commissioner for Human Rights often delivers a statement or addresses the General Assembly, highlighting the importance of human rights and calling for their universal protection.
Volker Türk, the current U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, works tirelessly to promote humanity’s well-being. Speaking on September 11 at the 54th session of the U.N. Human Rights Council, Mr. Türk said: “The human rights cause in all its facets has the potential to unify us, at a time when we urgently need to come together to confront the existential challenges that face humanity. This is ultimately about building trust and restoring hope.”
International Human Rights Day serves to raise awareness about ongoing human rights challenges and mobilize efforts to address them.
When Is International Human Rights Day 2023?
International Human Rights Day is celebrated annually on December 10. While not a public holiday, this date holds immense significance as it marks the day when the U.N. General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in December 1948.
On this day, people from diverse backgrounds and cultures come together to commemorate human rights principles and reflect upon the progress made in advancing human rights worldwide.
How To Celebrate International Human Rights Day
Celebrating International Human Rights Day empowers individuals to recognize their rights, understand the rights of others, and take action against discrimination, inequality, and injustice. It serves as a reminder that each person has a role to play in creating a world where human rights are universally upheld — ensuring dignity, equality, and freedom for all.
Participate in local events, seminars, or workshops that focus on human rights issues. Engage in discussions and learn from experts, activists, and community leaders to deepen your understanding and inspire meaningful action.
Advocate for Change
Utilize your voice to promote human rights. Join advocacy groups, sign petitions, or engage with organizations dedicated to human rights causes. By actively advocating for change, you contribute to the creation of a more just and inclusive society.
Harness the power of social media platforms and other channels to raise awareness about International Human Rights Day. Share informative content, inspiring stories, and messages of solidarity, using hashtags like #HumanRightsDay and #StandUp4HumanRights.
Support Human Rights Organizations
Consider making a donation to organizations tirelessly working to protect and promote human rights worldwide. Your contribution can make a tangible difference in the lives of individuals whose rights are being violated.
As just one example of an organization that promotes human rights,Convoy of Hope is a faith-based nonprofit corporation that has consistently sought to improve people’s lives since its founding in 1994. Convoy of Hope will be celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2024 having surpassed key milestones: helping more than 200 million people in need and distributing more than $2 billion in resources.
Convoy’s Children’s Feeding initiative now provides regular nutritious meals to more than 533,000 children around the world. Convoy’s Women’s Empowerment initiative helps women establish personal businesses that create needed income for themselves and their families.
Each of Convoy’s six initiatives aims to reduce poverty and hunger in communities.
International Human Rights Day serves as a powerful reminder of the importance of equality and dignity for every individual.
Born out of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, this day celebrates human rights achievements and calls for continuous progress in protecting the rights and freedoms of all people.
By educating ourselves, participating in events, advocating for change, spreading awareness, and supporting human rights organizations, we actively contribute to a world where human rights are respected and upheld.
Let us unite and work toward a future where equality and dignity serve as the foundations of our societies.
For Micheline, brutal gang violence and food insecurity is a constant reality for her and her family in #Haiti. It's been difficult for her parents to keep a steady income and put food on the table. Convoy currently serves more than 125,000 meals a day in Haiti in partnership…