International Youth Day

With the world getting more and more connected and turning into a global village, the expectations of the aspiring younger generation are skyrocketing. The gap between your aspirations and ability to realise them is increasing and youth finds themselves being subjected to stress, anxiety, and depression. There are many issues relating to youth which needs the attention of the governments, societies, more importantly, the family members. “International Youth Day” is being commemorated on 12 August and the theme for 2020 is “Youth Engagement for Global Action”.

One in every six persons worldwide belong to the younger generation and projected to peak around 2065, with the growth being more in the poorest countries. Education and youth employment are essential for reaping the “demographic dividend” and harness the same to achieve the SDGs by 2030. Empower the youth to find out what their strength is and providing avenues to realise the same is the responsibility of the societies.  Pursuing sports, fine arts and learning to live in congruence with the surrounding and accepting the diversity is to be taught.

Most of the challenges humanity currently faces, such as the COVID-19 outbreak and climate change require concerted global action, meaningful engagement and participation of the younger generation to be addressed effectively.

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World Elephant Day

World Elephant Day is launched to bring attention to the condition of Asian and African elephants and is celebrated every year on 12 August. Elephant is a sacred animal in many cultures around the world, but poaching, habitat loss, human-animal conflict and exploitation in captivity are some major threats to elephants which can push them on the brink of endangered species. Elephants are social animals’ livings in herds and they display intricate social and emotional behaviour and value their families more than other animals. Elephants are long-lived animals with great memory and are extremely adaptable, occupying a variety of habitats from desert to savannah to dense forests. Elephant families have a female head; the oldest experienced female elephant is responsible to lead the herd and are called “matriarchs”. Elephants communicate in a many ways – including sounds like trumpet calls, body language, touch and scent and sometimes vibration in ground. Elephants play an important role in maintaining the biodiversity of the ecosystems.

Shrinking habitats forces the elephants to come into closer contact with people which results in more frequent conflict over land and resources with consequences such as crop raiding and reciprocal loss of life. Human-elephant conflict has become a risk to biodiversity conservation, and the management of such conflict is a primary goal for elephant conservation.        
We need to bring the world together to help elephants

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International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples

Human beings have always been inquisitive and explored the world, the advancement of Science and Technology made the world a “Global Village”. While enhanced connectivity is bringing people of diverse backgrounds to come together, also posing challenges in adapting to the local situation. The dying of folk arts, indigenous traditions are becoming a concern to societies across the world. The situation with indigenous tribes is very bad. Humans in their greed to harness the natural resources, started encroaching into the landscapes of indigenous people. is happening to such a large extent that the very existence of the indigenous communities is being threatened.

9 August is International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples and being observed to create awareness about the rights of indigenous people. Except for Antarctica, indigenous people are inhabited along every continent of the world. In the era of COVID, Indigenous peoples are seeking their solutions to tackle pandemic.

By employing their traditional knowledge and practices and demonstrating their capability to adapt. Indigenous people are limited in number which is fast dwindling, if we do not take steps soon we would lose them. Future generations would see and know them only from what has been written about them.

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International Tiger Day

The magnificent Bengal Tiger is the national animal of India. But a worrying factor is that Tigers are one of the most endangered species. July 29 is “International Tiger Day” to raise awareness and to encourage tiger conservation. This year marks the tenth International Tiger Day. India is doing well, with 6% a year increase in its population.  50 tiger reserves across Shivalik Hills and Gangetic Plains Landscape, Central Indian Landscape and Eastern Ghats, Western Ghats Landscape, North East Hills and Brahmaputra plains Landscape and the Sundarbans. Significance of conservation of tiger gains importance as the tiger is an “umbrella species”, its conservation enables the conservation of their entire ecosystems. What are fingerprints to humans, stripes are to tigers with no two tigers having the same stripes.  As per the latest count, India has less than 3000 tigers,
75% of the world tiger population. Such low numerical numbers are too fragile to give us comfort.

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World Hepatitis Day

Diseases like TB, Hepatitis continue to threaten humanity. WHO notes that Hepatitis is the second-most killer disease after TB. World Hepatitis Day provides an opportunity to join hands to educate about hepatitis being a global public health concern and development of new technologies for early diagnosis, prevention, cure and treatment. A hepatitis-free future is achievable, WHO given a call to eliminate viral hepatitis as a public health threat by 2030 and is included in the SDGs. Organising Hepatitis Day has a Cuttack link, with Prof SP Singh proposing 28th July be designated as Hepatitis day. Treatment options for hepatitis depend on the type of hepatitis (acute or chronic). Vaccines are available for some and others it is work in progress. There are other forms like alcoholic hepatitis and autoimmune hepatitis, threatening humanity. With many people infected by Hepatitis, it has become one of the pressing public health concerns in India. World Hepatitis Day is an occasion to call on people and governments across the world to act and raise awareness to find the “missing millions”.

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World Nature Conservation Day

There is a realisation about the importance of pancha bhutas in the Indian ancient Knowledge systems and profess the need to maintain a balance. The journey of mankind and hurry to achieve progress and enhance the quality of life has missed the destination. This has resulted in imbalance, overexploitation of resources and the very survival of the planet is being challenged.  Conservation of nature is of utmost priority for all human beings and their life on this planet. World Nature Conservation Day is observed on July 28 to raise awareness about the importance of preserving natural resources and protecting them.  Nature is threatened by many of our actions and It is the responsibility of human beings to protect nature and create a healthy environment in the present to leave something behind for future generations. Natural resources are limited and took millions of years for the formation of minerals and humans are exploiting them at a pace difficult to sustain the resources. The origin of commemorating and the history of World Conservation Day is unknown. It is good to see people across the world come together and organise events to bring awareness for preserving precious natural resources.

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The International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystem

The Sundarbans (beautiful forest) is the world’s largest area of mangrove forest. Mangroves are a type of tropical forest that originates at the boundary of land and sea flooded regularly by tidal water. Mangroves are home to the diverse array of plants, invertebrates and abundant wildlife. The coastal ecosystems of mangroves capture and hold significant amounts of carbon from the atmosphere and ocean (blue carbon) contributing to the mitigation of climate change. Urbanisation, industrialisation, and discharge of domestic sewage, industrial effluents, pesticides, aquaculture and salt pans are making Mangroves the most threatened ecosystems on earth, with serious ecological and socio-economic impacts. July 26 celebrated as “The International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystem”, to raise awareness of the importance of mangrove ecosystems and to promote solutions for their sustainable management, conservation and uses. Mangroves act as a natural coastal defence against storm surges, tsunamis, rising sea levels and erosion. It’s important to protect mangroves because they are difficult to replant. No other species of tree in the world can survive in saltwater.

Our Solutions are in Nature!

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World Brain Day

World Brain Day” is celebrated on 22 July to increase public awareness about brain health. The theme of the year long events is “Move Together to End Parkinson’s Disease”. Parkinson’s disease is a neurodegenerative brain disease effecting the whole-body and of all ages. It is estimated that there are more than 7 million people effected and likely to reach 12 million by  2050. Research is on to find out the reasons of onset and treatment. The disease identified way back in 1817 by British physician, James Parkinson, and named after him. Human Brain is the largest brain organ of all living organisms in terms of relative to body mass/size. Our brain is divided into two lobes, right and left. It is important is to have a balance between the left and right brain is what makes the brain perform at its optimal capacity. Like any other organ, the brain too needs nutrients. The difference between brain and mind has been a subject of debate since ancient times.  It is said that “Brain” is considered a physical manifestation of the “Mind”. Need to take care of both your body and mind (or should it be Brain)!

Happy World Brain Day!

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World Snake Day

World Snake Day is celebrated to increase the awareness about snakes and conservation of
a sometimes dangerous but often misrepresented reptile. Their prehistoric lineage, snakes give a glimpse to prehistoric times. Göbekli Tepe in Turkey estimated to have been built 11-12 thousand years ago, have carvings of abstract symbols of snakes. One finds their mention in religion and mythology, from the Bible, ancient Egyptian texts to Puranas. Description of Krishna’s Kalinda Mardhanam on a multi-hooded snake in the River Yamuna is cherished by many. Maximum snake bite incidents occur when humans inadvertently step on or otherwise disturb the peaceful creatures. Snake venom has been used for anti-tumour treatments to antibacterial properties. Climate change, habitat loss, and exploitation threaten many snakes. Snakes are an important part of our community and a vibrant, functioning planet. Fear and negative attitudes about snakes are the biggest barriers to their conservation.

Next time you see a snake, move away, take precautions to be safe but leave it to itself.
And snakes need our help.

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World Population Day

To make people aware of the issues related to overpopulation, in 1989, the UN passed a resolution to observe July 11 of every year as World Population Day.  The purpose of observing this day is to bring attention to the burden being created by the rapid population growth.  Such uncontrolled growth puts uncertain pressure on natural resources, wildlife extinction and habitat loss. Moreover, the population growth is not uniform nor the natural resources and addition of every million people the imbalance is getting enhanced.  COVID19 pandemic is impacting the world differently, it is estimated that six months continuous lockdown with major disruption of health services became a cause of seven million unintended pregnancies in low and middle-income countries. This problem of overpopulation cannot be solved by magic in a day, educating and bringing awareness is the only option.

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