Guest Author - Vannie Ryanes
World AIDS Day is December 1, its theme for 2010 is “Universal Access and Human Rights.” It is apropos that December is Universal Human Rights Month. With so much unrest going on in the world, this is a good time to think about human rights for all people.
Universal Human Rights Month. On Dec. 10, 1948, the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The purpose of Universal Human Rights Month is to share information about human rights throughout the world and to distribute copies of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in English and other languages. For more information go to http://www.udhr.org/udhr/default.htm
Safe Toys and Gifts Month. When buying holiday presents, people sometimes don’t consider whether the gift's they’re purchasing are safe for children. The National Safe Kids Campaign recommends that when selecting toys, consider the child’s age, interests, and skill level. Look for quality design and construction, and follow age and safety recommendations on labels.
National Stress-Free Family Holidays Month. The holiday season can be stressful. Don’t drive yourself crazy trying to create the “perfect” holiday. Instead, identify what’s truly important to you and your family, and develop holiday traditions that are uniquely your own.
Hanukkah Nov. 30 Hanukkah begins at sunset. It commemorates the re-dedication of the Temple in Jerusalem, and the miracle of the menorah that stayed lit for eight nights. For more information visit http://www.history.com/topics/hanukkah
National Tolerance Week, Dec. 1-7. Promote diversity and celebrate multiculturalism, share your culture while learning from other cultures and experiences, and learn to accept others for their differences. For more information visit http://www.tolerance.org/
National Handwashing Awareness Week, Dec. 5-11 Holiday get-togethers increase the risk of spreading germs and catching diseases. The goal of National Handwashing Awareness Week is to decrease the spread of infectious diseases by educating people and communities. For more information visit http://www.uhl.uiowa.edu/aboutuhl/news/archive/handwashing/index.xml and http://www.henrythehand.com/pages/content/hwaw.html
World AIDS Day, Dec. 1. According to UNAIDS estimates, 33.4 million people are now living with HIV, including 2.1 million children. World AIDS Day, first observed in December 1988, is dedicated to raising money, increasing awareness, fighting prejudice, and improving education. The World AIDS Day theme for 2010 is “Universal Access and Human Rights.” For more information visit http://www.worldaidsday.org/
Nobel Prize Day, Dec. 10. Date on which most Nobel Prizes are presented by the Nobel Foundation in Stockholm, Sweden, on the anniversary of the death of Alfred Nobel. The Nobel Peace Prize is presented by the Norwegian Nobel Committee in Oslo, Norway, also on Dec. 10. For more information visit http://nobelprize.org/
National Haiku Poetry Day, Dec. 21. Celebrate a day/ in a cold winter season/ with delicate verse. For more information about and how to write haiku visit Scholastic's explanation http://www2.scholastic.com/content/collateral_resources/pdf/d/dec05_unit_whatishaiku.pdf
Christmas, Dec. 25. Christmas is both a sacred religious holiday and a worldwide cultural and commercial phenomenon. For more information visit http://www.history.com/topics/christmas
New Year’s Eve, Dec. 31. The last day of the Gregorian calendar. For more on the Gregorian calendar visit http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/245469/Gregorian-calendar For more on New Year's Eve, there is till time to make a few last-minute resolutions.