Defenders’ Day

Observed annually on October 14th in Ukraine, Defender’s Day is a state holiday that honors all of those who have fought for the sovereignty of Ukraine. This holiday was originally known as Defender of Ukraine Day, but that name was changed in 2021 Defenders and Defendresses of Ukraine Day in honor of not only the male defenders of Ukraine but also the female defenders as well.

Most people refer to this holiday by its shortened name, however, in Ukraine, this day is a public holiday. If the holiday falls on a weekend, then it’s usually moved to the following Monday.

The History Of Defender’s Day In Ukraine

Defender’s Day is a holiday that replaced Defender of the Fatherland Day, a holiday that was observed on the 23rd of February and was replaced because it was seen as a Soviet holiday that was no longer applicable to Ukraine. This was especially true with the disputes over Russia over territory in Crimea and eastern Ukraine.

On October 14th, 2014, Defender’s Day was passed by Presidential decree and later approved by the Ukrainian Parliament. It established the 14th of October as a day to honor the men and women of Ukraine who have fought heroically to defend their country. It’s a day that bolsters patriotism in Ukraine. The date was chosen for this holiday because it marks the Day of the Protection of the Blessed Virgin.

Observing Defender’s Day In Ukraine

This is a holiday that’s widely observed in Ukraine with the symbols of the country and with various events. Not only is the blue and yellow Ukrainian flag raised on government buildings, but it’s also displayed on many businesses and private residences. There are also marches, exhibitions, and festivals that are traditionally held on this holiday.

Where is it celebrated?
Ukraine (National holiday)
When is it?
This year (2023)
October 14 Saturday
Next year (2024)
October 14 Monday
Last year (2022)
October 14 Friday