National Children's Day in the United States is celebrated on the second Sunday in June.
It is a day to highlight the importance of children in our society and the difficulties they go through. Many children in our society face a lot of problems and hurdles in different aspects of their lives.
The intention of this day is to try and give children a better future by improving their welfare and trying to make the world a better place for them.
A similar holiday to National Children's Day is Universal Children's Day, also known as World Children's Day, commemorated every year on November 20.
History of National Children's Day
National Children's Day has been observed on many different dates in the United States.
It was originally created by Reverend Dr. Charles Leonard from Chelsea, Massachusetts, in 1856.
Children's Day was celebrated on the second Sunday in June and it was a day meant for baptizing children and addressing a few of children's special needs and problems.
Eventually, in 1989, the Bush and Clinton administration officially proclaimed that National Children's Day would be observed officially on the second Sunday of October every year.
This was the official National Children's Day date until 2001.
It was then changed to the first Sunday of June by the Republican government. However, the Obama Administration changed the date again to November 20 to coincide with the UN's World Children's Day.
All these changes caused a lot of confusion and hence people chose to celebrate according to their wishes.
Some go with the original second Sunday in June, while others prefer to observe it in November.
Why Is There A National Children's Day
Children are some of the most vulnerable members of society. We need to contribute to raising awareness of children's welfare to ensure they have a better future ahead of them.
Many children are deprived of their basic right to education and forced into child labor in many parts of the world including the United States.
A report by Save the Children states that in America children are not given enough resources to reach their full potential.
This is why so many organizations are dedicated to protecting children, and so many laws and protocols are in place to ensure that children's welfare is kept to a high standard.
National Children's Day also reminds us that children are the future, and encourages us to slow down and pay more attention to the children in our lives.
Children are playful, bright, imaginative, and curious and we can learn a lot from them.
What is the Declaration of the Rights of the Child
On November 20, 1959, the Declaration of the Rights of the Child was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly.
This declaration establishes the fundamental rights of children and was the inspiration for World Children's Day. The declaration comprises 10 bullet points, which include:
- The right to special protection for the child’s physical, mental, and social development.
- The right to adequate nutrition, housing, and medical services.
- The right to special education and treatment when a child is physically or mentally handicapped.
- The right to understanding and love by parents and society.
- The right to recreational activities and free education.
- The right to protection against all forms of neglect, cruelty, and exploitation.
How to Celebrate National Children's Day
Take some time today to spend with the children in your life. Play some of their favorite games, take them for a nice day out, start a conversation with them about what is going on in their lives, and teach them different life skills, and about issues that children in different parts of the world face. Just be a good role model for them.
If you can, donate some time or money to help out your local organizations that are dedicated to improving the lives of children in the community.
Read Universal Children's Day next.