Michael Sutherland, Web Services Librarian
According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), about 774 million adults lack the minimum literacy skills. One in five adults is still not literate and two-thirds of them are women. About 75 million children are out-of-school and many more attend irregularly or drop out. However, literacy is also a cause for celebration on the day because there are nearly four billion literate people in the world.
The UN General Assembly proclaimed a 10-year period beginning on January 1, 2003, as the United Nations Literacy Decade. The assembly also welcomed the International Plan of Action for the Decade and decided for UNESCO to take a coordinating role in activities at an international level within the decade’s framework. On International Literacy Day each year, UNESCO reminds the international community of the status of literacy and adult learning globally. This day was first celebrated on September 8, 1966.
Although the UN’s International Literacy Day is a global observance and not a public holiday, let’s show the world the importance of literacy by celebrating International Literacy Day. Help join communities around the globe to act as a united voice in raising awareness for those who cannot read or write. You can celebrate simply by pulling up and settling into a comfy chair with a good book at the library.