International Widows’ Day
Observed annually on June 23rd, International Widows Day is a holiday that attempts to address the issue of injustice and poverty that’s faced by widows and their dependents all over the world. For far too many women in the world, widowhood is a tragedy that’s magnified by them having to engage in a long-term fight for their basic dignity, basic human rights, and sometimes even survival.
There are over 260 million widows around the world and many of them are invisible in the communities in which they live. As global pandemics, war, migration, and disasters leave tens of thousands of women widowed and displaced on a daily basis, it’s up to all of us to figure out how to give these women back their voice and help them maintain their dignity and basic human rights.
The History Of International Widows Day
The Loomba Foundation was the first to raise awareness about the problem of widowhood. The first International Widows Day took place in 2005 and by 2010, events observing this holiday were held all over the world including the U.S, the U.K, Nepal, Syria, Kenya, India, Sri Lanka, Rwanda, Bangladesh, and South Africa. In December of 2010, the UN General Assembly adopted International Widows Day officially and marked June 23rd as the day of its observance.
Observing International Widows Day
On this day, conferences are held at the United Nations and by governments all around the world to address the issues of widowhood and how these widows can be given back their basic human rights and dignity. People also use the day to address their governments about the issue of widowhood.
On social media, the hashtag #InternationalWidowsDay is used to raise attention about this holiday and the problems faced by millions of widowed women all around the globe. No one should suffer a loss of human rights, dignity, or voice because of the loss of a spouse.