Youth Day in Morocco
Observed annually on August 21st, Youth Day is a holiday that honors the youth of Morocco. It coincides with King Mohammed VI’s birthday. Because this holiday follows Revolution Day, another public holiday, it essentially gives many Moroccans a two-day period off from work or school.
This is beneficial because a variety of activities take place across the country during these two days. These activities include parades, festivals, competitions, and other events. These events help to demonstrate how important Morocco considers its youth.
The History of Youth Day in Morocco
This holiday was officially established as a public holiday in 1999 when the late King Hassan II designated August 21st as a national holiday. It was created to underscore the importance placed on Moroccan youth in driving Morocco’s development forward.
King Hassan II recognized the importance of empowering young people to work on behalf of Morocco, and it has been observed ever since. Although Youth Day has been a public holiday for only the past two decades, as a practice, it actually began in 1948. It was used as a rallying cry to engage the youth against the colonial rule of the French.
Evidently, it was effective because, in 1956, Morocco gained independence. Youth Day was soon established as a holiday to commemorate young people’s contributions to Moroccan independence, but it would not be moved to August 21st, the date of Mohammed VI’s birthday, until 1999. This change occurred after King Hassan II passed away on July 23rd, 1999.
In 2019, festivities for this holiday were suspended and continued to be suspended through 2021. However, even though the festivities were discontinued at a federal level during that time, it was still celebrated by many people across the country.
Some Fun Facts About Morocco
- In Morocco, there are more active phones in use than there are people living in the country.
- The two official languages of Morocco are Arabic and Berber.
- Morocco exports over 112,000 tons of dates every year.
- The national sport of Morocco is soccer.
- Barbary lions used to be found in the mountains and forests of Morocco. However, they have since become extinct.
Observing Youth Day in Morocco
Youth Day in Morocco is observed with special awards, tributes, and other activities. It is also marked with parades, festivals, and sporting competitions. On social media, the hashtag #YouthDayMorocco can be used to spread the word about this holiday.