Are you looking for ways to participate in World Humanitarian Day but need to brush up on your knowledge first? Every year on the 19th of August, this day is commemorated across the globe. 

Each year, the world comes together to recognize the hard work of aid workers and how they help others in need. 

There are many ways businesses have shown their respect for the day. If you’re looking to take part and honor the day, here’s everything you need to know about World Humanitarian Day.

What is World Humanitarian Day?

In 2003, a fatal bombing in the United Nations Bagdad Headquarters took the lives of 22 people. This included Sergio Vieira de Mello, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.

In 2009, the United Nations General Assembly named the 19th of August World Humanitarian Day. This was to respect and remember those who lost their lives during their service.

In 2020 alone, 475 humanitarians were attacked, and 108 of those people were killed. The attacks are difficult to understand, as they can be involved with common crime in countries that are struggling.

Whilst it is to respect those whom we lost, it is also an opportunity to educate and show the world how many need humanitarian help across the globe.

Over 200 million people in 36 countries need humanitarian help. This can be due to war, poor health standards, and now COVID-19.

Every year, across the globe, World Humanitarian Day is commemorated. The need to help those less fortunate or anyone in need of aid is great.

Yearly themes

Each year since 2009, World Humanitarian Day has adopted many themes of crisis to help those most in need that year.

Over the last few years, those themes have included climate crisis, equality, and our front-line workers for COVID-19. 

Across the globe, there have been celebrations of these themes and spread the word across the internet and many social media platforms. A brief overview of those themes is listed below:

  • 2019 – Celebrating Women Humanitarians and their contributions to supporting people in crisis
  • 2020 – #RealLifeHeroes – A tribute to aid workers on the front line during the global pandemic
  • 2021 – The Human Race – Accelerating climate action
  • 2022 – #RealLifeHeroes – Sharing personal stories of front-line workers during the global pandemic

 These different themes will be the focus of that year for the United Nations. It is not mandatory to only focus on these themes, however, it spreads the word quicker and helps engagement!

Participating on social media

It is important to spread the word in many ways, one of the easiest ways to promote this day is through social media. 

It has never been easier to get involved through large social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. You can even donate through a range of ways on platforms such as Instagram. 

By positively using these platforms to educate others on crises across the globe, you can show your gratitude to these workers.

Thanking those working as humanitarians to help others is an important part to play. It is also important to understand current affairs and know how to help.

By sharing on social media, you are part of a large group of people who want to shed light on how the positive impact humanitarian work has. Here are some social media strategies from different businesses across the years.

In 2013, The United Nations released a video of Beyoncé with the phrase ‘the world needs more’.

This went viral and social media and was able to spread the word quickly. If people shared the sponsored word was shared, $1 was unlocked and went towards aid efforts.

In 2021, Barclays Bank teamed up with Save the Children to create a new financial technology company. This was to provide digital solutions to humanitarians and those in need.

Fashion brands have also been part of social media campaigns for World Humanitarian Day. Not only have they been working on sustainability in fashion, but some have also created campaigns to help aid workers.

The clothing brand Upasana is an ethical clothing company that creates sustainable fashion. They have founded a project to help fisherwomen attain their livelihood in villages affected by tsunamis. 

Ways to spread the word

Aside from these global brands and celebrities, there are other ways you can spread the word for World Humanitarian Day. Social media is now a powerful tool to help spread the word of the day.

Businesses have been sharing the day on social media to show their gratefulness for aid workers.

If you’re not yet savvy with social media, start using tools that can help you with your social media planning or publishing. 

Celebrate Our humanitarians

Many brands will share a donation page to their chosen charity for World Humanitarian Day. Or they may simply share their best wishes and gratitude for those out helping.

Celebrating our humanitarians can help people understand the lengths they are taking to help our planet and people in need.

Either way can help educate and spread the word. Get started with Sprout Social to make social media management and engagement easier!

World Humanitarian Day FAQ

What Is World Humanitarian Day?

This day commemorates our humanitarians working to help those in crisis.

What’s the history behind World Humanitarian Day?

In 2003, a bomb hit the UN headquarters in Bagdad, killing 22 people including the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

When is World Humanitarian Day?

World Humanitarian Day takes place every year on August 19th.

What Are the Themes for World Humanitarian Day?

There has been a range of themes commemorating the day over the years. This has included climate crisis, celebrating women humanitarians, and our front-line workers.

How Do I Celebrate World Humanitarian Day?

There is no right way to celebrate the day, but most people choose to donate and/or share their thanks on social media.