By Anjali Gursahaney
New Delhi: Children’s Day is celebrated to reinforce the youth to be a responsible citizen. It is celebrated in different countries for different causes, but with a similar mindset. The values and disciplines learned as a child are responsible for the kind of adult one would become.
Children’s Day is a day observed all around the world to remind us about the children’s right to enjoy their childhood without any boundaries and to become educated well-developed adults in the future.
Children’s Day also emphasizes the need of proper methods of raising kids. After all, today’s children are tomorrow’s future and a nation is built with its youth. Thus, childhood is a very special time which needs to be celebrated.
The world doesn’t have just one Children’s Day, but many. Here are a few others that are celebrated in various countries on different dates:
Universal Children’s day
The Universal Children’s day is celebrated on November 20 every year. In 1954 when, children needed to be protected from working long hours in an unsafe condition, the UN General Assembly recommend that all countries should establish a Universal Children’s Day. This was done with a view of achieving children’s rights and to allow all children to have proper access to education. On November 20, 1959, the United Nations adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child, spelling out specific rights which all children should know about. Thus, Children’s Day started out as a celebration on the 20th November of every year.
World Children’s Day
The World Children’s Day is celebrated on the 20th of November. This is a day that the company McDonald’s uses to raise funds for the Ronald McDonald House of Charities. It was on November 20th, 2002 when World Children’s Day was first held. The occasion is celebrated every year in honour of children in more than 100 countries.
International Children’s Day
The International Children’s Day was celebrated every year in December. This was an initiative by UNICEF and the International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. Later, after the ‘World Conference for the Well-Being of Children’ was held in Geneva, Switzerland in 1925, governments around the world decided to choose one day as Children’s Day to pay attention to children’s issues. Many countries chose June 1. And so, International children’s day is celebrated on the 1st of June every year.
Children’s Day in Japan
In Japan, Children’s Day is a national holiday called, ‘Kodomo no Hi’ and is celebrated every year on May 5th. Kodomo no Hi means ‘Children’s Day’. Japanese Golden Week includes Children’s Day and is held in honour of children and to celebrate their happiness. In 1948, the Japanese government declared Children’s Day a national holiday. Children’s Day in Japan is a festive day to celebrate the life of children.
Children’s Day in India
Children’s Day or Bal Diwas is celebrated on 14th November every year in India. 14th November is also the birth date of India’s first Prime Minister, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. He was keen on the welfare, education, and development of children in India. He was fond of children and was known as Chacha Nehru. On November 14, 1956, The Times of India reported the following event: “Nearly 100,000 children assembled at the National Stadium today to participate in a Children’s Day rally, which coincided with the Prime Minster’s 67th birthday celebrations.” A year later in 1957, 14th November was declared as Children’s Day or Bal Diwas on Chacha Nehru’s birthday.
Childhood is a special time, which should be enjoyed, and not wasted by working. It is a time when playful memories are made and they shouldn’t be tainted by the horrors of child employment and abuse. It’s an age when the human mind develops the most and care should be taken to protect the young ones from any sort of trauma which could turn them into anti-social, psychologically disturbed characters in future. Children just need love and care. They need to be educated on their human rights and be given books in their hands to read and not to sell.