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GLOBAL DAYS IN AUGUST 2017

AUGUST 6TH - HIROSHIMA DAY

Hiroshima Day commemorates 6 August 1945, the day when an atomic bomb was dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima, followed a few days later by another dropped on the city of Nagasaki.

The bombings effectively ended World War II by bringing about the surrender of Japan, but at a terrible price - the two cities were destroyed and casualties, mostly civilians, were estimated at around 200,000, with many more people dying later from injuries and illness.

Hiroshima Day is now a focus for anti-war and anti-nuclear discussions and demonstrations. Click here to read about Sadako and her paper cranes.

AUGUST 8TH – UNIVERSAL AND INTERNATIONAL INFINITY DAY

Infinity Day was created by Jean-Pierre Ady Fenyo in 1987. It is a day for thinking about anything and everything, especially about the concept of infinity…the idea of no beginning and no end to space and time. Infinity Day is a celebration of philosophy for everyone in the world. The more philosophical we are, the more we will think about questions such as: Why do we exist? What is the meaning of life? Can the way we live be safer, better for all humanity? Is peace possible? Are we alone in our part of the Galaxy?

AUGUST 9TH – INTERNATIONAL DAY OF THE WORLD'S INDIGENOUS PEOPLES

This day is observed each year to promote and protect the rights of the world’s indigenous population. The event gives us a chance to gain a better understanding of indigenous peoples around the world as well as recognising the achievements and contributions that they make to improve issues such as environmental protection.

This year's theme puts a spotlight on the issue of indigenous peoples' access to health care services, as improving indigenous peoples’ health remains a critical challenge for indigenous peoples, Member States and the United Nations.

The people in the photograph live in Peru.

AUGUST 1OTH - INTERNATIONAL BIODIESEL DAY

Biodiesel is made using a simple process where natural oils or fats (including soya bean oil, canola oil, coconut oil, palm oil, tallow or used cooking oil) are reacted with an alcohol. It was first used successfully for the first time on 10th August 1893 by Rudolf Diesel, who developed an engine that could run on peanut oil.

Biodiesel can be used in standard diesel engines, either alone or blended with petrodiesel. As fossil fuels start to run out, biodiesel and other biofuels will become increasingly important.

AUGUST 12TH - INTERNATIONAL YOUTH DAY

The theme of International Youth Day 2016 is The Road to 2030: Eradicating poverty and achieving sustainable consumption and production.

Sustainable consumption entails the use of products and services that meet the basic needs of communities while safeguarding the needs of future generations. The development and promotion of individual choices and actions that increase the eco-efficiency of consumption of all and minimize waste and pollution is critical to achieving equitable socioeconomic development. Click here to find out more.

AUGUST 13TH - INTERNATIONAL LEFT-HANDERS DAY

This day, introduced by Lefthanders International, was first observed in 1976. As its name suggests, it is meant to promote awareness of the inconveniences facing left-handers in a predominantly right-handed world and celebrates their uniqueness and difference. Left-handers make up only seven to ten per cent of our population. There is a special website celebrating the day if you would like to find out more.

AUGUST 15TH – ASSUMPTION DAY

The feast day of the Assumption of Mary, also known as Assumption Day, celebrates the day that the Virgin Mary ascended into Heaven following her death. It is celebrated annually on August 15th in many countries, particularly in Europe and South America. Click here to find out more.

AUGUST 19TH - WORLD HUMANITARIAN DAY

Humanitarians provide life-saving assistance to millions of people worldwide. They place their own lives at risk to help others in conflict zones and areas of natural hazards. More than 700 humanitarian workers have died or experienced the most dangerous situations while trying to help those in need. Humanitarians provide support for different world challenges such as hunger, gender-based violence, refugees and displaced people, help for children, as well as clean water and access to sanitation.

AUGUST 23RD – INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR THE REMEMBRANCE OF THE SLAVE TRADE

This day is to remind people of the tragedy of the transatlantic slave trade. It gives people a chance to think about the historic causes, the methods and the consequences of slave trade. The day also pays tribute to those who worked hard to abolish slave trade and slavery throughout the world.

Each year the UN invites people all over the world to organise events: theatre companies, cultural organisations, musicians and artists express their resistance against slavery through performances that involve music, dance and drama; educators inform people about the historical events associated with slave trade, the consequences of slave trade, and to promote tolerance and human rights.

30TH AUGUST - LA TOMATINA

La Tomatina is a festival held on the last Wednesday of August each year in the town of Bunol near to Valencia in Spain. Thousands of people make their way from all corners of the world for the 'world's biggest food fight' where more than 100,000 kg of over-ripe tomatoes are thrown in the streets.

There are a few rules, like squashing the tomatoes before you throw, but basically it's every man for himself! The battle lasts for an hour.

The festival is in honor of the town's patron saints, Luis Bertran and the Mare de Deu dels Desemparats (Mother of God of the Defenseless), a title of the Virgin Mary.

Like many Spanish festivals, the celebration was originally a religious one, to honor Bunol's patron saint, San Luis Bertran. One year (around 1945) there was a tussle during a procession and some boys tossed tomatoes. A few say it was prompted by village rivalries. But others claim it stemmed from unhappiness with Franco's reign following Spain's civil war; throwing tomatoes at the priest and mayor was a way to protest against authority. Though banned several times in the 1950s, the tradition survived, eventually becoming the centerpiece of the town's two-week celebration.