International Literacy Day: Realizing The Importance Of Literacy And Learning

Bhubaneswar:  The International Literacy Day, also known as the ILD, is celebrated annually on September 8. It is observed to emphasize on global literacy needs, which go in sync with mission of ILD i.e Literacy for everyone, everywhere. The international Literacy Day vouches for an educated, literate world by empowering and encouraging learners, educators, students and leaders besides providing resources to make literacy accessible for all.

September 8 was declared as ‘International Literacy Day’ (ILD) by UNESCO on November 17, 1965 with an aim to highlight the importance of literacy in our daily lives and promote awareness regarding issues around illiteracy. It promotes and sustains the importance of literacy to the international community and public consciousness by bringing together bringing governments, NGOs, businesses, communities and schools. This day provides an opportunity for Governments and members of Civil society to highlight improvements in world literacy rates besides reflectinging the major literacy challenges across the globe. Notably, the issue of literacy and education is an integral part of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals and its 2030 agenda for sustainable development.

The United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals, adopted by global leaders in September 2015 summit calls for universal access to quality education and learning opportunities. One of its major targets is to ensure that all young people achieve literacy, education and numeracy. Also, adults who lack these skills are also to be given the opportunity to acquire them.

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This theme for International Literacy Day 2018 is ‘Literacy and skills development’. Despite the sea changes made in the realms of education and learning, numerous literacy challenges continue to exist. Their eradication needs meticulous planning, analytical insights and foresightedness. While these problems persistently haunt the spread of literacy, the demands for skills required for work and other fields are evolving rapidly. The theme of ‘Literacy and Skills development’ seeks to develop integrated approaches that simultaneously support the development of literacy and skills in order to empower people’s lives besides contributing to equitable and sustainable development. The day focuses on skills and competencies required for employment, careers, and livelihoods, particularly technical and vocational skills, along with transferable skills and digital skills.

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Literacy plays a major role in helping an Individual stand up for what he believes in. When persons are illiterate, they are often oppressed and are denied their right to freely voice their opinions. Literacy assures that people are aware of their rights in the first place so that they are able to assert them besides helping their oppressed counterparts who have little, or no voice at all. Being able to read, write and speak are the three essentials things necessary for advocating human rights and ensuring equality for all.

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