A selection of UN TV programmes, webcasts and video clips on issues in the news

Thursday, 8 October 2015

World Mental Health Day 2015, October 10

Journée mondiale de la santé mentale, le 10 octobre.
World Mental Health Day, 10 October.
 Día Mundial de la Salud Mental, 10 de octubre.
 Всемирный день психического здоровья, 10 октября.
اليوم العالمي للصحة العقلية، 10 أكتوبر

Dignity in Mental health

Thème 2015: Dignité dans la santé mentale.
Theme 2015 : Dignity in Mental health.
 Tema de 2015: Dignidad de la salud mental.
 Тема 2015: Достоинство в области психического здоровья.
 موضوع عام 2015: الكرامة في الصحة العقلية.

This year the World Federation for Mental Health has chosen “Dignity in Mental Health” as the theme for World Mental  Health Day on 10 October.  “Dignity” is a word that has a number of meanings, none of them precise—but we all recognize  dignity when we see it, and more importantly, we recognize the lack of it when it’s absent. With this year’s theme we aim to show the ways in which dignity can be provided in all aspects of mental health, ranging  from care for our patients/consumers to the attitudes of the general public.  We hope you will support the theme with  activities in your own region that educate people about the importance of dignity in mental health. All too often people with mental disorders and their families find dignity absent in their dealings with health care provid - ers and with society at large.   They feel demeaned by the manner in which they are treated.  Health professionals don’t  have the time needed to address difficult problems.  Budget problems at the national level impact health and social care  budgets at the local level, making coordinated care difficult to achieve.   People with mental disorders frequently do not  get coordinated care for other illnesses that may be present, resulting in neglect of their overall health—and ultimately,  shortened lifespans. Having said the above I should also underline that a somewhat broader conception of dignity should include reciprocal  respect between providers and recipients of care. Synthesis and collaboration is certainly preferable to antithesis and con - frontation. We must all realize that the enemy is the illness, not the professionals. This year’s World Mental Health Day material looks at dignity in mental health from several directions.  In terms of mental  disorders, we think about dignity in treatment and care, and consumers of mental health services can provide valuable  insight about that.  Person-centered care is of major importance. We’ve included material about educating the public on mental and behavioral disorders to encourage a better understand - ing of these disorders. Approaching public education at an earlier point is an important part of this year’s material. Mental  health promotion is part of the foundation for spreading a message about dignity in mental health.  An appreciation that  good mental health is a valuable asset should encourage people to think about mental health more broadly and also think  about ways to support it and thus also serve prevention by reducing the risk of mental illness. For example, starting early  to teach young children and teenagers about social and emotional learning strategies lays a foundation for enlightened  future approaches. Incorporating dignity into an approach to mental health issues is fundamental to dealing with stigma and discrimination.   There is nothing dignified about subjecting people with any illness to stigma, adding to the problems they already cope  with through the illness itself.  We need to work harder towards changing social attitudes and spreading public awareness  of the nature of mental illness. As we seek to change outlooks, the importance of recovery is a central part of the message.  Dignity is inherent in recovery.  Care should encompass not just the present stage of the illness but the prospect that, over time, improvement can be  achieved and that recovery, both in its medical sense and in its broader psychosocial connotation is a realistic and certainly  dignified perspective. Prof. George
Christodoulou President, World Federation for Mental Health


Our theme for World Mental Health Day this year is “Dignity in Mental Health,” a topic that is fundamental to the provision  of good mental health care.  The World Federation selected the theme knowing that it is hard to define “dignity” precisely.   Yet respect for dignity represents an essential component of care and can produce major improvements in attitude to - wards people who are experiencing a multitude of problems.   The World Federation for Mental Health’s goal when it established World Mental Health Day in 1992 was public education  at all levels of society.    The Day, celebrated internationally on October 10, has more than fulfilled this aim.  It provides  an occasion for many regional and local efforts to put the spotlight on a selected aspect of mental health care--with the  added bonus of participating in a broadly celebrated international event.   “Dignity in Mental Health” provides the kind of topic that is relevant everywhere, and can be defined according to local cir - cumstances and needs. We have collected a group of papers from our expert authors who show that dignity in the mental  health context can have many meanings and can be applied to every aspect of care.  Further, a concern for dignity counters  the discrimination and bias that are all too often encountered by people with mental illness. Two of the articles in this year’s material point to the wider applications of a “dignity” viewpoint.  An article from Norway  about mental health promotion in schools shows the value of starting education about feelings and behavior at an early  age.  A paper about refugees in California suggests that the perspective of a refugee about mental health has many layers,  and recognizing the impact of a refugee’s desperate experiences may confer true dignity. As before, the campaign will encourage local organizers to use traditional media to expand local coverage through radio,  television, newspapers and magazines.  We have had a presence on social media for a while, but we hope to be more active  on Facebook and Twitter during the “dignity” campaign to extend its outreach to a new group of younger people. Many thanks for all your efforts to promote mental health awareness in your communities through World Mental Health  Day events.  Whether large or small, your events contribute to growing public awareness of mental disorders and the need  to provide appropriate support for those who experience them, and their families.

Dr. Patt Franciosi Chair, World Federation for Mental Health

WHO QualityRights Toolkit

Assessing and improving quality and human rights in mental health and social care facilities - WHO QualityRights

The WHO QualityRights tool kit provides countries with practical information and tools for assessing and improving quality and human rights standards in mental health and social care facilities. The Toolkit is based on the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. It provides practical guidance on:
° the human rights and quality standards that should be respected, protected and fulfilled in both inpatient and outpatient mental health and social care facilities;
° preparing for and conducting a comprehensive assessment of facilities; and
° reporting findings and making appropriate recommendations on the basis of the assessment.

The tool kit is designed for use in low-, middle- and high-income countries. It can be used by many different stakeholders, including dedicated assessment committees, nongovernmental organizations, national human rights institutions, national health or mental health commissions, health service accreditation bodies and national mechanisms established under international treaties to monitor implementation of human rights standards and others with an interest in promoting the rights of people with disabilities.
The WHO QualityRights tool kit is an essential resource, not only for putting an end to past neglect and abuses but also for ensuring highquality services in the future.

Thousands of people with mental health conditions around the world are deprived of their human rights. They are not only discriminated against, stigmatised and marginalised but are also subject to emotional and physical abuse in both mental health facilities and the community. Poor quality care due to a lack of qualified health professionals and dilapidated facilities leads to further violations.

The theme for this year’s World Mental Health Day, observed on 10 October, is "Dignity in mental health". This year, WHO will be raising awareness of what can be done to ensure that people with mental health conditions can continue to live with dignity, through human rights oriented policy and law, training of health professionals, respect for informed consent to treatment, inclusion in decision-making processes, and public information campaigns.

FORUM : World Mental Health Day - October 10



WMHDay was observed for the first time on 10 October 1992 and continues to be the official day of commemoration every year. It was started as an annual activity of the World Federation for Mental Health by the then Deputy Secretary General Richard Hunter and It has become the largest and most widely promoted education and advocacy program of the WFMH.

Dignity un Mental health - World Federation of Mental Health


The Invitation for Medical Students to Participate in World Mental Health Day 2015 has been extended to October 5th.

The World Federation of Mental Health (WFMH) has been organizing World Mental Health Day events on 10th October since 1992 with special themes for each year. This year’s theme is Dignity in Mental Health.
The Association for Community Mental Health Promotion (ACMHP) from Turkey, in consultation with experts from leading international mental health organizations, has planned an event to support World Mental Health Day through its own “Campaign against stigmatization in mental disorders.”
Medical students around the world will – and may already – be working with individuals living with mental illness. We invite you to provide your own theme or slogan to accompany the WFMH and ACMHP in Turkey.

Prof Bulent Coskun
President of The Association for Community Mental Health Promotion
Prof George Christodoulou
President of WFMH
Prof Gabriel Ivbijaro
President Elect of WFMH

World Post Day 2015, October 9

UPU Director General, Mr. Bishar Abdirahman HUSSEIN Message for the World Post Day 2015.

Innovation, Integration and Inclusion are the key drivers for the future of the Post

As we celebrate World Post Day today, we can look back with satisfaction on a rich history of transformation in the Post, which has always been able to find its place in the world market. Indeed, the Post can pride itself on being the oldest medium of communication, one that still plays a key role in the sending of information and goods.
From liberalization to privatization and the emergence of competition, the Post has faced many challenges to its survival, but none so daunting as the development of modern information technology. Today, the traditional postal business line – letter post – has been greatly challenged by faster and more efficient ways of communication thanks to advancements in information and communications technologies.
However, successful Posts have taken these challenges as opportunities to innovate and establish new market segments, understanding that a faster and more efficient communication medium is actually what the Post needs in order to build a new business value chain.
The transformation has not come easily. Indeed, there are still many Posts that have yet to take full advantage of new technologies to improve their business performance. Nevertheless, the message is loud and clear: the survival of the Post hinges on its ability to quickly change and innovate. Customer expectations, needs and tastes are changing, and the Post must change as well to meet these new demands.
With that realization, the Universal Postal Union, in its draft World Postal Strategy for 2017–2020, has identified postal industry reform as the key driver for the future. In its blueprint, Vision 2020, the UPU focuses on Innovation, Integration and Inclusion as the main factors that will drive postal business in the future.
The reality is that the future of the Post strongly depends on its ability to innovate and create new products and services. One of the keys to innovation will be the Post's capacity to embrace new technologies and transfer its trusted brands into the digital space. To achieve this, it will be critical for the Post to develop digital competencies, along with the relevant regulatory frameworks that will support the new environment.
For successful integration, the Post will need to build a seamless network that is connected both virtually and physically, and that has a local and international presence. Full integration calls for the involvement of all key players in the postal supply chain, including customs and transport, and the facilitation of cross-border e-commerce.
With the United Nations' new Sustainable Development Goals, which have been embraced by world leaders, the Post today has an even more relevant role to play as an infrastructure for development. Given its universal nature, the Post is best placed to drive the economic, social, financial and digital inclusion of all citizens of the world. Through its vast network, the Post should target micro, small and medium-sized enterprises as well as the unbanked population as a new business frontier and create appropriate products to support the market. Achieving success in this area is one of the best ways to ensure the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, for the benefit of the global community.
The future of the Post starts now. We must all work towards creating products and services that meet the needs of our current and future customers. Let us focus on innovation, integration and inclusion in our business to create a strong Post for the future. Only in doing so will the Post be able to achieve success and maintain its place in the world market, with a presence that continues to be visible and relevant.
I wish you a happy World Post Day.

Bishar Abdirahman HUSSEIN 

 ForumWorld Post Day - 9 October

Custumets just want to choose - UPU June 2015

Events :  2015 Letter-Writing Competition winners announced - Universal Postal Union
Sara Jadid from Lebanon has won the UPU’s International Letter-Writing Competition 2015 with her letter on the world she wishes to grow up in. She impressed an international jury with a heartfelt plea for a world without war.

2015 Letter-Writing Competition winners announced - Universal Postal Union

This year, 65 member countries submitted their winning letters from the national heats to the international round. Some 1.5 million children participated.

World Sight Day 2015, October 8

World Sight Day, October 8.
Всемирный день зрения, 8 октября.
Journée mondiale de la vue, 8 Octobre
Día Mundial de la Visión, 08 de octubre.
يوم البصر العالمي، 8 أكتوبر

Theme 2015 : Eye care for all.
 Тема 2015: уход глаз для всех.
 Thème 2015: Soins des yeux pour tous.
 Tema de 2015: Cuidado de la vista para todos.
 موضوع عام 2015: العناية بالعين للجميع

World Sight Day 2015 key messages 

World Sight Day (WSD) is an international day of awareness, held annually on the second Thursday of October to focus attention on the global issue of avoidable blindness and visual impairment. The theme of World Sight Day 2015 (WSD13) is: Universal Eye Health. The theme is in keeping with the WHO’s Action Plan 2014-2019 and will be used for the next couple of years as a rolling theme. Each year, however, we will focus on a ‘Call to Action’, and for 2015 it is: Eye care for all.

Key messages
 •    4 out of 5 blind people are needlessly impaired; let’s work together for the elimination of avoidable blindness.
•    About 285 million people are visually impaired worldwide. Preventable causes are as high as 80% of the total global visual impairment burden.
•    90% of the world's visually impaired people live in developing countries.
 •    Invest in eye health – increase budget allocations to address need.
•    Address the human resources crisis in eye health – invest in training, innovation and research
 •    Integrate eye health at every level of the health system.
•    Withdraw user fees to the poorest

 World Sight Day (WSD) is an international day of awareness, held annually on the second Thursday of October to focus attention on the global issue of avoidable blindness and visual impairment. This year World Sight Day falls on 8 October 2015. WSD is co-ordinated by the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB).  WSD became an official IAPB event in the year 2000, and has been marked in many different ways in countries around the world each year since then.

World Sight Day is the focal Advocacy and PR event for IAPB and its members and partners each year, highlighting the fact that 80% of blindness is avoidable (i.e. preventable and/or treatable) – 4 out of 5 people have avoidable visual impairment. WSD provides a platform for organisations to encourage governments, corporations, institutions and individuals to actively support global blindness prevention efforts.

World Sight Day is supported by over 140 IAPB member organisations, which include every major eye care NGO in the world, apex professional bodies for ophthalmology and optometry, teaching hospitals and corporations, united in working together to eliminate avoidable blindness and visual impairment. This year, IAPB challenges amateur and professional photographers around the world to join us in highlighting the impact of eye health in people’s lives, by taking part in an International Photography Competition with theme, ‘Eye care for all’.

 Every year hundreds of activities are planned and executed on World Sight Day.  While many are featured on the IAPB website’s Activity Report, this does not indicate the full scale, as organisers of events are requested but not obliged to report to IAPB. While the global WSD theme, and certain core materials are generated by IAPB, events are organised independently by IAPB member and supporter organisations.


World Sight Day this year is on 8 October 2015. In keeping with this year’s call to action, we include a number of suggestions below to help you plan your WSD Activity/Event. We are sure you have more ideas – do share them with us on and we will include them on our website and social media pages.

PHOTO COMPETITION  IAPB challenges amateur and professional photographers around the world to join us in highlighting the impact of eye health in people’s lives, by taking part in an International Photography Competition with theme, ‘Eye care for all’.  Send us your pictures – professional shoots, amateur compositions, instagrams or flickr – with the hashtag, #Eyecareforall by 8 October 2015 – World Sight Day.

PLEDGE  This World Sight Day, ask your health official or key stakeholder to join you in pledging support for blindness prevention efforts. Identify a list of activities that you can do locally so that avoidable blindness can be reduced in your area of work. Then, invite the community to pledge support so that there is “no more avoidable blindness” in the community.

Blindfolding important statues in your area can be a great media opportunity! By blindfolding an important statue, you can draw attention to the issue of avoidable blindness and visual impairment, including the many solutions that you help implement.  You could also invite celebrities or government functionaries to blindfold themselves and (temporarily) experience blindness – always a great media moment!   

World Sight Day is also a great time organise walks and public rallies. The WSD promotional material this year also includes designs for balloons – a very colourful way to make your presence felt. The promotional pack sent out this year also includes a few sample balloons for you to use.


 WSD is a great day for awareness raising and informing potential customers and donors of the causes of avoidable blindness and means of eradicating them. If the focus is cataract, glaucoma, refractive errors or diabetic retinopathy, it all begins  with an eye exam. This year, for the week leading up to World Sight Day organise a chain – ask every customer who walks in for an eye exam to bring in two more customers. Inform them of the need to get one’s eyes tested.


Optometry Giving Sight is urging all members of the optical community and anyone who values good vision to take part in the World Sight Day Challenge for the month of October. The World Sight Day Challenge is the largest annual global fundraising campaign to address avoidable blindness caused by uncorrected refractive error. Participating is easy – simply make a monthly or annual donation during October!


•    Why not hold a Gala Event?  Either organised by your organisation or follow the IAPB theme and join forces with other like-minded organisations and organise an extravaganza!
•    Encourage your Minister of Health & local celebrities to sign a Declaration of Support
•    Distributing Vitamin A to children in your area makes for great photo opportunities for media
•    Set up an eye screening centre and encourage people to get their eyes tested for World Sight Day
•    Take up the challenge to perform the most eye surgeries around the world in celebration of WSD
•    Raise awareness of the issues of avoidable blindness and WSD through public education in schools, during sponsored activities, including readathons and competitions etc
•    Gain pro-bono advertising to raise awareness
•    Produce a poster to be used alongside the official IAPB WSD Poster which can be used at events, in retail outlets and other locations
•    Hold a musical concert in the dark or other black out events – e.g. dinner/theatre/light projection of WSD logo on buildings etc
•    Live internet link-ups to events/operations/screenings etc and share your WSD celebration with others around the world
•    Hold AMAs on Reddit. Use Instagram or Pinterest and spread the word.

 If all stakeholders commit to making the effort in planning and working together on the suggested activities for World Sight Day, events will take place in even more countries than last year.  It does not matter how small an event you organise, the important thing is to take part and raise awareness of avoidable blindness.

Below are some simple ‘event production’ guidelines to aid all member organisations in running events:

1.    Start planning events and activities NOW.  Brainstorm ideas and communicate with all your regional and country offices to get as many things happening as possible.
2.    Ensure that any ‘Minister of Health Events’ are run in conjunction with the government supporting a solid eye health programme plan.
 3.    Presentation material is available for speakers on Microsoft Powerpoint slide programmes; Video footage is available on IAPB’s Youtube channel.  
4.    If you are planning to have media attend the event – ensure you have press packs available for them (see the basic WSD Press Pack Material list).
5.    Make sure you capture your event on camera!  Do send us feedback and a report of your event to

Three dimension to cosider when moving towards universal coverage

Sunday, 4 October 2015

World Habitat Day 2015, October 5.

World Habitat Day, October 5.
 Día Mundial del Hábitat, 5 de Octubre.
 Всемирный день Хабитат, 5 октября.
 Journée mondiale de l'habitat, le 5 Octobre.
 اليوم العالمي للموئل، 5 أكتوبر

 Theme 2015 : Public Spaces for all .
 موضوع عام 2015: الأماكن العامة لجميع
 Тема 2015: Общественные места для всех.
 Thème 2015 : Espaces publics pour tous.
 Tema 2015: los espacios públicos para todos.

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s message on World Habitat Day 2015.

Safe, Easy Access to Public Spaces for Poor Citizens Vital to Achieving Equality, Ending Discrimination, Secretary-General Says in Message on World Habitat Day

Each year on World Habitat Day, we reflect on the state of human settlements and on what we want the cities of the future to look like.
This year’s observance follows the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development — an inspiring new framework that will guide our efforts to end poverty and ensure prosperity for all on a healthy planet.
The new Sustainable Development Goals — which include SDG 11 to “make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable” — represent a broad international consensus that recognizes sustainable urban development as a transformational approach.  As part of an integrated agenda, cities and human settlements have an important role to play across the entire spectrum of the 2030 Agenda.
The theme of World Habitat Day 2015 is “Public Spaces for All”.  Frequently overlooked and undervalued, public spaces are increasingly being recognized as the vibrant, beating hearts of the world’s towns and cities, which are today home to half of humanity.
Public spaces are crucial for poor and vulnerable citizens.  Improving access to them and making them safe for women and girls increases equity, promotes inclusion and combats discrimination.  High-quality public spaces encourage people to communicate and collaborate with each other, and to participate in public life.  Public spaces can also provide basic services, enhance connectivity, spawn economic activity and raise property values while generating municipal revenue.  But successful public spaces do not just happen; they require careful collaboration among local authorities, local inhabitants and other actors.
The Habitat III Conference, to be held in Quito in October 2016, offers an opportunity to point the way towards solutions to the challenges of rapid urbanization.
I look forward to working with all partners to make Habitat III a success — and to enable people everywhere to enjoy public spaces where we are equal, where our cultures and histories are reflected, and where we can shape a future that is safe and sustainable for all.

Ban Ki-moon, United Nations.

The Urban Law Database

  Message of the UN-Habitat Executive Director Dr. Joan Clos on World Habitat Day 2015.

Public Spaces for all

This year we start the Urban October celebrating the World Habitat Day and reflecting on Public Spaces for All. We do it in a  partnership between UN-Habitat and the HeforShe initiative promoted by UN-Women. It aims to engage men and boys, one half  of humanity, in removing the social and cultural barriers that prevent the other half of humanity from achieving their potential. This  partnership examines and promotes the role for men and women alike in the creation of gender-equal public spaces for all. 
Good  public spaces enhance community cohesion and promote health, happiness, and well-being for all citizens as well as fostering  investment, economic development and environmental sustainability. The character of a city is defined by its streets and public spaces. From squares and boulevards to neighbourhood gardens and  children playgrounds, public space frames city image. The connective matrix of streets and public spaces forms the skeleton of the  city upon which all else rests. Public space is a vital component of a prosperous city. Well designed and managed public space is a  key asset for a city’s functioning and has a positive impact on its economy, environment, safety, health, integration and connectivity. 
The quality of life for people in cities is directly related to the state of its public spaces. Public space provides room for social and cultural interaction and can foster a sense of belonging and pride in an area. A public  space that is open to all, regardless of ethnic origin, age or gender, provides a democratic forum for citizens and society. Public space  can bring communities together, provide meeting places and foster social ties. These spaces shape the cultural identity of an area,  are part of its unique character and provide a sense of place for local communities. Sharing common spaces is the soul of the city. Where public space is inadequate, poorly designed, or privatized, the city becomes increas¬ingly segregated. The result can be a  polarized city where social tensions are likely to flare up and where crime and violence rises.
A mixed and diverse public space (use,  users, design, state, time, etc.) provides a place that is vibrant and busy automatically reducing insecurity. Many cities are developing policies that promote compact, liveable areas, with adequate public space that facilitate public transport,  encourages walking and cycling, thereby reducing carbon emissions. Public space is critical for environmental sustainability. Green  and open public space brings many important environmental benefits such as, the cooling of air and the absorption of atmospheric  pollutants. The significant increase in hard surfacing and the reduction in green spaces lead to higher temperatures in towns and  cities. Vegetation in the public space can help to redress this imbalance.
Although a good city performance is not only about the amount of public space; we see successful urban grids when public space  is in balance with buildable plots. Like in a perfect yin and yang, a city should allocate to open spaces, parks, squares and plazas at  least the same proportion as to private space.  Given the importance of public spaces, it is worrying that provision of public space is limited in many cities, that access to public  space is becoming more and more controlled and that often cities lack comprehensive knowledge of the public space they have and  management mechanisms to enhance its quality, access and benefits.
In addition, tools for creating and protecting public spaces  are not widely applied and accessible to cities across the world, and in particular in developing countries. An enormous local asset  is undervalued and underutilized. We should all ensure that in the framework of the ‘Transforming our World – the 2030 development agenda’, especially SDG 11,  which formulates the ambition to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable – we reflect on the  need to plan and manage public spaces.
The New Urban Agenda to be defined in Habitat III in Quito in 2016 will provide a unique  opportunity to implement the 2030 development framework and deal with the challenges of urbanization in the next two decades.

FORUM : World Habitat Day - October 5

The United Nations has designated the first Monday of October of every year as World Habitat Day. The purpose of World Habitat Day is to reflect on thestate of our towns and cities, and on the basic right of all to adequate shelter. It is also intended to remind the world that we all have the power and the responsibility to shape the future of our cities and towns.

World Urban Campaign


HABITAT III   : The United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development - Quito, Ecuador. 17-20 October 2016

DESIGN COMPETITION : Highlighting and recognizing designs and designers that will best depict the state of our towns and cities today.

URBAN NIGHTS :An initiative for an outdoor, picnic style screening to: bring people together, promote local talent and utilize open spaces.


World Habitat Day
Streets and public spaces have often been overlooked and undervalued, but are increasingly being considered the backbone of cities.
Publlic spaces are places which are accessible and enjoyable by all without a profit motive and take on various spatial forms, including parks, streets, sidewalks, markets and playgrounds.
In 2011, UN-Habitat adopted resolution on sustainable urban development through access to quality urban public spaces.

Good public spacesenhance community cohesion and promote health, happiness, and well-being for all citizens as well as fostering investment, economic development and environmental sustainability.
Well designed and managed public spaces and streets are a key asset for a city’s livability and economy:
  • Increases property values
  • Multiplies retail activity
  • Enhances safety
  • Fosters social cohesion and equality
  • Improves health and well-being
  • Improves the environment
  • Makes the city more attractive
  • Promotes more effective and efficient transportation and mobility

The proposed Sustainable Development Goals highlight Public Spaces as a key and important topic. “Sustainable Development Goals, (Proposed Goal 11 Target 7 – By 2030, provide universal access to safe, inclusive and accessible green and public spaces, in particular for women and children, older persons and persons with disabilities).” It is in this regard that UN-Habitat together with the main partner for World Habitat Day 2015, UN Women, are honoured to celebrate and launch this theme during Urban October 2015.
World Cities Day

How to raise awareness in your city
  • Draw attention to World Habitat Day, and its theme, the challenges and issues around Public Spaces, especially with regard to women, the youth, children, older persons and persons with disabilities.
  •  Raise awareness through mass and social media: press articles, radio and television, newspapers, exhibitions, organize press conferences and broadcast video and audio spots, facebook, twitter, Instagram
  • and YouTube engaging policy makers, government officials, academics, other professional and community representatives.
  • Organize high-level meetings and discussions with national, regional and local governments on the theme towards realization of the proposed Sustainable Development Goal on Cities and Human Settlements (SDG Goal 11, Target 7) and Habitat III.
  • Local authorities and governments may launch a new public space, or establish by-laws or policy to ensure safety in public spaces.
  • Plan an event or activity in existing public spaces in your city. Promote and raise awareness for the need for access to public spaces to all.
  • Organize fund raising, recreation or entertainment activities like sports activities or concerts and use the proceeds to upgrade a common space, a street, a park or a market.
  • Sponsor projects that make public spaces safe and inclusive. These may include; installing security lighting and cameras, donating a sanitation facility, build seating areas, or planting trees and grass in a public space.
  • Participate in the Urban October Design Competition.
  • Organize a themed Urban Nights event.
  • Promote #HabitatDay and HabitatIII on Social Media.
  • Download and share the World Habitat Day campaign kit with your network.
  • Register your planned activity below or submit your photo at

World Teachers' Day 2015, October 5.

Theme 2015 : Empowering teachers, building sustainable societies.
Theme 2015 : Un personnel enseignant fort pour des sociétés durables.

Empowering teachers, building sustainable societies gaps in access and learning.

 Every year on World Teachers’ Day,  we celebrate educators and the central role they play in  providing children everywhere with a quality education . Today, as the global community comes together around the new 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals, the role teachers play has never have been more important. 

The new global education goal, SDG 4 which is at the heart of the Education 2030 Agenda , calls for “ inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all ”. Realising t his goal is critical to achieving all our  global development targets  – for strong societies depend on well-educated cit izens and a well-trained workforce. But we can only realize this agenda if we invest in  recruiting, supporting, and empowering teachers. 

Quality teachers are increasingly recognized as the most important factor in  children’s learning  – and thus, in impro ving educational attainment levels,  increasing the ability of young people to participate in  society and  today’s  knowledge economies, boosting productivity and prosperity.  Especially in poor  communities and countries affected by conflict, quality teaching can literally  change a child’s life  – helping children overcome enormous challenges and  preparing them for better lives and brighter futures. But around the world today, far too many teachers are undervalued and  dis empowered.  There is a mounting shortage of quality teachers, unequal distribution of trained teachers, and inadequate or non-existent national standards  for the teaching profession.  These are all key contributing factors to wide equity.

  The poorest regions and sch ools and the earliest  grades  – those most in need  – are often the most affected. This is a deeply  troubling gap, as study after study shows that reaching children in the earliest years is critical to their development. The UNESCO Institute for Statistic s estimates that to achieve universal primary education by 2020 countries will need to recruit a total of 10.9 million primary  teachers. This is a global education crisis in the making  – unless we act.   

Recognizing the  looming crisis  at the 2015 World Education Forum , held in Incheon, South Korea, leaders  committed to “ensure that teachers and educators are empowered,  adequately recruited, well - trained, professionally qualified, motivated and  supported within well - resourced, efficient and effectively gov erned systems”. The 2015 Oslo “Education for Development”, Summit in Norway,  further  highlighted  the imperative of addressing the shortage of qualified teachers and of investing in  teacher education.  Now, by committing to the  Education 2030 agenda,  the UN Member States agree to substantially increase the supply of qualified teachers, including through  international cooperation for teacher training in developing countries, especially  Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States. This is an important step  – and now we must live up to these commitments.  

To meet the new education goal and all its targets by 2030, we must intensify efforts to provide sufficiently qualified, well deployed, motivated and supported teachers to every school, every community, and every child.  

Governments should redouble efforts to engage in dialogue with teachers and their  organizations and devise concrete policy measures and  strategies to provide appropriate incentives, including competitive remuneration and cle ar career paths to teach in schools located in challenging environments and retain them in the  profession.  

Teachers should be empower ed through the provision of decent working conditions, well- resourced, safe and healthy working environments, trust,  professional autonomy and academic freedom.  

The ILO/UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers (1966) , the  UNESCO Recommendation  concerning  the Status of Higher Education Teaching  Personnel  (1997)  and the ILO Policy Guidelines on the Promotion of Decent Work for Early Childhood Education Personnel (2014) are  essential international standards and benchmarks for  the teaching profession. On the first World Teachers' Day  o f a new education agenda of global  development , we appeal to the international community to value, support, and  empower teachers of the world.  For it is they who will educate a new generation of children who, in turn, will carry forward all our goals to build a better world for  all. 

Irina Bokova, Director - General, UNESCO 
Guy Ryder, Director - General, ILO 
Anthony Lake, Executive Director, UNICEF 
Helen Clark, Administrator, UNDP 
Fred van LEEUWEN, General Secretary, Education International

 Every year on the 5 October, the World Teachers' Day celebrates and highlights the contribution of teachers towards the education and development of children around the world. The celebration of this year’s WTD comes just after the adoption of the new Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs) in September in New York. This is a unique opportunity to recall the key role that teachers should play in the new education agenda.In May2015 at the Education World Forum (WEF) in Incheon, Korea, participants committed to “ensure that teachers and educators are empowered, adequately recruited, well-trained, professionally qualified, motivated and supported within well-resourced, efficent and effectively governed systems”. Participants at the parallel session “Teachers for the Future we want” recognized furthermore that teacher quality is the most significant condition for learning and that the empowerment of teachers must be considered as a top priority in all education and development strategies. 
How many teachers are needeed to provide every child with a primary education?

Teacher crisis in Sub Saharan Africa

Education 2030, Cannot happen without trained teachers in classrooms.

Wanted trained teachers in classrooms

EVENTS :   World Teacher’s Day 2015  - Mobilizing for a Roadmap 2030 for teachers.
                    Monday 5 october 2015.
                    UNESCO, Paris

 Part 1:  Official  ceremony
 Part 2:  Panel discussion: " moving ahead towards 2030 "
 Part  3:  Roundtable  " Strong foundation for learning begins with good ECE teachers"

World Teachers Day 2015 - DRAFT AGENDA (Monday 5 october 2015) 10.00 AM - 02.00 PM.

World Teachers Day 2015 - DRAFT AGENDA (Monday 5 october 2015)  02.00 - 5.00 PM

This year’s WTD will address the challenge of mobilizing a roadmap for teachers towards 2030.
A considerable intensification of efforts is needed to provide sufficiently qualified, motivated and supported teachers by the end of 2030. It is still a challenge for education systems around  the world to pay adequate attention to factors affecting teacher effectiveness, such as policies  on training, recruitment, deployment, management, assessment and professional development. Listening to teachers is essential to enlighten current debate on the role of teachers in Education 2030. In this spirit, a panel discussion will be organized with the participation of  teachers from  different countries. Teachers will have the opportunity to share their experiences and discuss their role as teachers in the perspective of 2030.

The post 2015 UN development agenda seeks to achieve inclusive and sustainable global development. Early Childhood Education (ECE) is the foundation for building inclusive and  sustainable societies. The benefits of early support are throughout life and the y extend  throughout society. 

Despite the  increased recognition on the importance of ECE, the teaching personnel have not received the same level of appreciation. Among the entire teaching profession, ECE teachers in  many parts of the world, typically receive minimum or no training, the lowest pay and benefits with no career prospects,  and have low socio - economic status overall. 

For ECE to become a powerful force for tackling discrimination and for bridging gaps of inequity, its teaching force  must be  tho roughly trained and  supported to be able to deliver quality teaching and care. They  must have adequate training and work conditions so that they can integrate the content and  practice of  a holistic  early childhood care and education and  ensure that our youngest children are able to transition smoothly into  primary education. To address the persistent concerns on ECE teachers, a roundtable discussion is organized during the WTD 2015 to discuss ECE as a profession (status, working conditions) and innovations for teaching young children for sustainable future .

Key documents  :

Friday, 2 October 2015

International Day of Non-Violence 2015, October 2nd

Seven Dangers to Human Virtue

This year, as we commemorate the 70th anniversary of the United Nations, the International Day of Non-Violence has special importance.
At a time of escalating conflicts, violent extremism, displacement and humanitarian need, the courage and determination of Mahatma Gandhi, whose birthday we celebrate today, is an inspiration for us all.
Gandhi showed the power of peacefully opposing oppression and hatred. He showed how cooperation and tolerance can prevails over injustice.  He demonstrated the great value of the rule of law in breaking vicious cycles of vengeance.
The United Nations stands for the peaceful resolution of disputes and for mutual respect across culture, faith and other lines that might divide.
The International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures, first proposed by UNESCO for the period 2013 - 2022, has generated a wide range of creative projects that demonstrate the power of diversity and dialogue as forces for peace.
The newly 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development can also point the way towards reducing violence.  A more sustainable world will be a safer world.
On this year’s International Day of Non-violence, let us recall the achievements of Mahatma Gandhi -- and renew our commitment to non-violence and lives of dignity for all.
Ban Ki-moon

FORUM : 2 October - International Day of Non-Violence

The International Day of Non-Violence is observed on 2 October, the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi. This day is referred to in India as Gandhi Jayanti.  In January 2004, Iranian Nobel laureate Shirin Ebadi had taken a proposal for an International Day of Non-Violence from a Hindi teacher in Paris teaching international students to the World Social Forum in Bombay. The idea gradually attracted the interest of some leaders of India's Congress Party ("Ahimsa Finds Teen Voice", The Telegraph, Calcutta) until a Satyagraha Conference resolution in New Delhi in January 2007, initiated by Sonia Gandhi and Archbishop Desmond Tutu, called upon the United Nations to adopt the idea.

Non-Violence-Skulptur from Carl Fredrik Reuterswärd in Malmö, Sweden  On 15 June 2007 the United Nations General Assembly voted to establish 2 October as the International Day of Non-Violence. The resolution by the General Assembly asks all members of the UN system to commemorate 2 October in "an appropriate manner and disseminate the message of non-violence, including through education and public awareness." The United Nations Postal Administration (UNPA) in New York City prepared a special cachet to commemorate this event, following a request from the Indian Ambassador at the Permanent Mission of India to the UN. The boxed pictorial cachet design was prepared by the UNPA and was limited to cancellation at UNPA's NY location (not Geneva and Vienna). The UNPA has indicated that all outgoing UNPA mail between October 2 and 31 carried the cache.