International Day of the World's Indigenous People is observed on 9 August to pay tribute to the indigenous communities of the world. According to the latest data, there are about 370 to 500 million indigenous people living in 90 countries.
Indigenous communities have their own unique set of languages, traditions, cultures, and governing systems. Many indigenous groups follow the same system practised by their ancestors for centuries. These systems have stood the test of time and have always come up with positive outcomes.
Indigenous peoples' special bond and connection with nature have also led to the protection of the environment. But various indigenous communities face difficulties due to governments' covert and overt attempts to control their lives.
Let's have a quick look at the history, significance, and theme of the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples 2022.
International Day of the World's Indigenous Peoples 2022: Theme
The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) has organised a virtual commemoration event of the International Day from 9 am to 11 am (EST) on Tuesday, 9 August 2022.
The theme for 2022 is 'The Role of Indigenous Women in the Preservation and Transmission of Traditional Knowledge'.
International Day of the World's Indigenous Peoples: History
The first International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples was celebrated in August 1995. The day came into existence when the 49/214 resolution was passed by the UN General Assembly on 23 December 1994.
9 August was chosen as the commemorative date since it was the first meeting of the UN Working Group on Indigenous Populations of the Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights.
Over the years, various indigenous groups found themselves to be on a disadvantageous terrain due to the urban development projects that destroyed and denigrated their lands and territories. Organisations and agencies like the UN and UNESCO have been making efforts for constitutional/legislative reforms for dominant indigenous groups.
International Day of the World's Indigenous Peoples 2022: Significance
The significance of the International Day of Indigenous Peoples is as follows:
This day celebrated the existence of indigenous peoples who are an essential and crucial part of our planet’s history. This day also helps us learn about the indigenous peoples' cultures, customs, and traditions that are interesting and teach us about the universe and the bigger picture.
This day aims to celebrate the languages of indigenous peoples at its core which helps build the identity of people. It helps us learn about different phonetics, grammar rules, and formal/informal styles that can tell one a lot about a community and its history.
It’s also a celebration of the freedom to live and practise their rights on a piece of land where they have lived for centuries. It helps promote their freedom to practise customs, traditions, and general lifestyles.