International Youth Day 2024 (12th August), Theme & History

International Youth Day 2024

The International Youth Day is observed annually on August 12th, highlighting youth-related concerns on the global stage and recognizing the immense potential of young people as valuable contributors to today’s interconnected world.

International Youth Day Theme 2024

The official theme for International Youth Day 2024 has not yet been officially announced by the United Nations.

The theme for 2023 International Youth Day was “Green Skills for Youth: Towards a Sustainable World.”

International Youth Day History

United Nations and Youth

  • In 1965, the General Assembly endorsed the Declaration on the Promotion among Youth of the Ideals of Peace, Mutual Respect, and Understanding between Peoples through Resolution 2037 (XX).
  • From 1965 to 1975, both the General Assembly and the Economic and Social Council emphasized three core themes for youth: participation, development, and peace. They recognized the need for an international youth policy during this period.
  • In 1979, the General Assembly designated 1985 as International Youth Year: Participation, Development, Peace through Resolution 34/151.
  • In 1985, the Assembly endorsed guidelines for youth planning and follow-up through resolution 40/14. These guidelines focused on diverse youth subgroups, including those with disabilities, rural and urban youth, and young women.
  • In December 2009, the General Assembly declared the year starting from August 12, 2010, as the International Year of Youth, coinciding with the 25th anniversary of the first International Youth Year in 1985.

This resolution, numbered 64/134, urged global support for activities at local and international levels to mark the occasion, involving governments, civil society, individuals, and communities.

Establishment of the Youth Day

The concept of International Youth Day originated in 1991 during the inaugural session of the World Youth Forum of the United Nations System, held in Vienna, Austria. Young people at the forum proposed the idea as a means to raise funds and awareness in support of the United Nations Youth Fund, in collaboration with youth organizations.

  • In 1998, the first session of the World Conference of Ministers Responsible for Youth took place in Lisbon, Portugal, from August 8 to 12.
    • During this conference, a resolution was adopted that officially designated August 12 as International Youth Day.
    • This recommendation was later endorsed by the General Assembly in its fifty-fourth session through Resolution A/RES/54/120 titled “Policies and programs involving youth” on December 17, 1999.
  • The General Assembly’s resolution also suggested the organization of public information initiatives to promote awareness of the World Programme of Action for Youth, which had been adopted by the Assembly in 1996.

Additionally, Security Council Resolution 2250, passed on December 9, 2015, focused on “Youth, Peace, and Security.” This resolution was significant in acknowledging the vital role of young peacebuilders in advancing peace and countering extremism. It emphasized the importance of youth as essential partners in global efforts related to peace and security.

International Youth Day Significance

International Youth Day, celebrated annually on August 12th, holds immense significance for several reasons:

  • It shines a spotlight on the unique challenges and opportunities faced by young people globally.
  • It brings attention to issues like education, employment, mental health, climate change, and social inclusion that impact young people significantly.
  • By raising awareness, the day sparks conversations, challenges stereotypes, and encourages action toward positive change.
  • International Youth Day serves as a platform to empower young people and recognize their potential as agents of change.
  • It highlights their leadership, creativity, and innovation in addressing global challenges and contributing to society.
  • The day encourages young people to participate in decision-making processes, advocate for their rights, and take ownership of their future.
  • It fosters dialogue and collaboration between young people from different countries and backgrounds.
  • It provides a platform for sharing experiences, ideas, and solutions to common challenges.
  • This global dialogue promotes understanding, cooperation, and a sense of solidarity among young people around the world.
  • The day catalyzes action, inspiring individuals, organizations, and governments to invest in youth development and support their initiatives.
  • It encourages the development and implementation of policies and programs that address the needs and aspirations of young people.

12th August 2024 Special Day

12th August carries global social significance as the United Nations commemorates International Youth Day in 2024. Coinciding fittingly with the time of year when youth potential shines bright annually, this observance celebrates young changemakers while confronting the unique challenges they face. The opportune timing provides a timely moment to reignite focus towards empowering youth through education and inclusion. As administrations worldwide unite on this particular 2024 date, the message resonates clearly – investing in youth secures our collective future.


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