Children’s Day is a national holiday in Taiwan.
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Children’s Day, celebrated annually on April 4, emphasises the importance of future generations and endeavours to promote their general well being. The day features a host of family friendly functions, fun activities and sporting events.
Children’s Day is recognised on various days in many nations throughout the world. The idea of promoting the well being of children globally began with an initiative by the 1925 World Conference for the Well Being of Children. Many nations began scheduling a day to promote the protection of children in 1950 after the Women’s International Democratic Federation formally established Children’s Day at a meeting in Moscow in 1949. The United Nations recommended the establishment of a Universal Children’s Day in 1954.
The growing international effort to safeguard the well being of children was again endorsed when the Declaration on the rights of the Child was adopted by the United Nations in 1958. The United Nations later adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1989. A host of international initiatives to ensure that children have access to food, health care services and education programs, including those administered by UNICEF, have been adopted and funded over the years. Taiwan originally adopted a day to commemorate Children’s Day in 1931. Children’s Day was formally adopted as a public holiday in 2011.
Instead of the usual academic studies, public schools offer special activities to celebrate the well being of Taiwan’s young people on Children’s Day. Women’s Day is also celebrated on April 4 of each year. The blended holiday was adopted in 1991 at the behest of Taiwanese parents who wanted to spend time with their children on Children’s Day. The combined holiday has become a family favourite.
The combined holiday of Children’s Day and Women’s Day in Taiwan represents an attempt to foster the general welfare of Taiwanese children and families. Both the Taiwanese government and non-governmental organisations sponsor events and activities to honour the children of Taiwan.
Although the combined holiday has grown into a national effort to strengthen Taiwanese families since the commemoration was designated as a national holiday in 2011, the day is really all about the children. Children just love public holidays and community celebrations. School activities provide children with an opportunity to laugh and sing. Playing diabolo, a Chinese yoyo, and other games is a source of joy, not to mention an opportunity to release a rush of youthful energy. Playing basketball is also a particular favourite of Taiwanese children.
Children’s Day also provides an opportunity for parents and teachers to get away from the daily grind and laugh with the children. There’s nothing more therapeutic than reading stories to young children and encouraging lots of smiles. As it is with holidays anywhere in the world, special foods and snacks play an important role on Children’s Day. The observance of Children’s Day is a special way of looking forward to the future. Putting everyday life on pause for a day to consider the future leaders of a nation is quickly becoming a Taiwanese tradition.