Calendar of International Observances

This calendar contains information on days, weeks, months, years, decades and other observances and the resolutions of international institutions and organizations declaring them.
An international observance, also known as an international dedication or an international anniversary is a period of time to observe some issue of international interest or concern. This is used to commemorate, promote and mobilize for action.

In 1950, the United Nations General Assembly approved the first international day - Human Rights Day - to be observed on 10 December. Resolution 423 (V) invited all states and international organizations to observe this day to celebrate the proclamation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by the General Assembly on 10 December 1948, and to exert increasing efforts in this field.

In 1978, the UN General Assembly proclaimed the first international week - the week starting 24 October (the day of the founding of the UN) - as a week devoted to fostering the objectives of disarmament: the Disarmament Week.

The first international year was proclaimed by the UN General Assembly in 1959. It was the World Refugee Year.

The first UN decade was the United Nations Development Decade designated by the General Assembly in 1961.

Source: http://www.un.org/en/events/observances/index.shtml (2014)