International Youth Day

International Youth Day

Each year, on the 12th of August, International Youth Day is celebrated as a way to recognise the efforts of the youth of the world in enhancing global society. This day also aims to promote ways that the youth can be engaged with so that they can become more actively involved in making positive contributions to their communities.

International Youth Day is not a public holiday but rather, a United Nations day of observance. Its idea was proposed in the year 1991 by young people gathered in Vienna, Austria, for the first session of the UN’s World Youth Forum. In this forum, it was recommended that an International Youth Day be declared. This day would help with fundraising and for promotional purposes in support of the United Nations Youth Fund in partnership with youth organisations.

In 2000, however, was when International Youth Day was first observed after being endorsed by the UN General Assembly in 1999, following a recommendation that was adopted during the World Conference of Ministers Responsible for Youth to proclaim the 12th of August as International Youth Day.

The youth are defined by the UN as an age group between 15 and 24 years old, which makes up one-sixth of the human population. The activities and events that take place around the world on International Youth Day help promote the benefits that young people bring into the world. As many countries participate in this global event, youth conferences on issues such as education and employment take place. Other activities include concerts promoting the world’s youth, as well as various sporting events, parades and mobile exhibitions that showcase young people’s achievements.