Every year on the first Monday of October, World Habitat Day is celebrated to remind the world that as humans we hold the power and responsibility to shape the future of cities and towns. This year, the day will be observed on October 4.
In 1985, the United Nations General Assembly declared that the first Monday in October every year would be celebrated as the World Habitat Day. The purpose of this great day is to recognize the basic rights of all humanity to adequate shelter and to encourage grassroots action toward ending poverty housing.
This Day was first celebrated in the year 1986 with the theme “Shelter is My Right” and Nairobi was the host city.
Other themes since then are:
1. “Shelter for the Homeless” (1987) and the host city was New York
2. “Shelter and Urbanization” (1990) and the host city was London
3. “Future Cities” (1997) and the host city was Bonn
4. “Safer Cities” (1998) and the host city was Dubai
5. “Women in Urban Governance” (2000) and the host city was Jamaica
6. “Cities without Slums” (2001) and the host city was Fukuoka
7. “Water and Sanitation for Cities” (2003) and the host city was Rio de Janeiro
8. “Planning our Urban Future” (2009) and the host city was Washington, D.C
9. “Better City, Better Life” (2010) and the host city was Shanghai
10. “Cities and Climate Change” (2011) and the host city was Aguascalientes
11. “Housing For All- A Better Urban Future” (2020) and the host city is Surabaya.
Some Facts about World Habitat Day :
World Habitat Day is a global observance and not a public holiday. Every year UN-Habitat calls upon its partners in central government, local government, civil society, the private sector and the media to take part in organizing activities to raise awareness and stimulate debate on the selected theme of the year.
The “Habitat Scroll of Honour” award, which was launched by the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UNHSP) in 1989, is considered to be the world’s most prestigious human settlements award.