Category: February

  • INTERNATIONAL STAND UP TO BULLYING DAY – Third Friday in November and First Friday in February


    Twice a year, International Stand Up to Bullying Day encourages people to wear a pink shirt and take a public stance against bullying. The day also shares how to recognize the signs of bullying and find ways to prevent it. It’s held on the third Friday in November as well as the last Friday of February.

    Bullying is defined as unwanted, aggressive behavior that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. Another core element of bullying is the high likelihood of repeated bullying behaviors. Bullying does not just affect the person on the receiving end. This kind of behavior affects the bullies themselves, as well as those who witness it. Bullying is especially common among school-aged children.

    In the United States, 20 percent of children between the ages of 12 and 18 say they have experienced bullying. On a global scale, one-third of the world’s youth are bullied. Those who did the bullying had more social influence, more money, or were physically stronger than the person they bullied. The bullying usually took place in a school cafeteria, hallway, classroom, school grounds, or bathroom. Some bullies also use texting and online platforms to target their victims.

    Bullying occurs in different ways. Some bullies use name-calling or spread rumors. Others are more physical, pushing, spitting, or threatening harm. Purposely making students feel left out and trying to make them do something they don’t want to are other ways kids are bullied. For some, the bullying is so bad that students no longer want to go to school. Worse yet, some students become suicidal due to bullying.

    HOW TO OBSERVE #StandUpToBullyingDay

    Schools across the world hold events to spread awareness about bullying and how to stand up to it. Many students and staff wear pink shirts to demonstrate solidarity against bullying. You can participate by wearing a pink shirt and encouraging your local schools to take part. You can also learn about bullying behaviors and how to protect your children from them.

    Share this day on social media with #StandUpToBullyingDay


    The first International Stand Up to Bullying Day took place in February of 2008 in Canada. During the initial event, over 125,000 students and staff registered to take a STAND against bullying. They wore pink shirts to help unite themselves against bullying. Since then, students all around the world have taken part in this very important day, held twice a year.

  • RED HAND DAY – February 12


    Every year on February 12th, Red Hand Day encourages political leaders to stop the use of child soldiers. This day is also referred to as the International Day against the Use of Child Soldiers.


    Sadly, many countries throughout the world allow the use of children in armed conflicts. About 250,000 child soldiers in the world are used in at least 20 countries. Some countries where this practice is especially common include Afghanistan, Colombia, Iraq, the Philippines, Sudan, and Yemen. The majority of child soldiers are between 15 and 18 years old. However, some countries recruit children as young as 9 years old.

    Besides facing life-threatening dangers, child soldiers also experience a lack of proper nutrition, shelter, and health care. In addition, brutal methods are used on these children to discipline them. As a result, some of these child soldiers die or become permanently disabled. Child soldiers that survive are traumatized for life.

    In some countries, no child is safe from becoming a soldier. They even force girls to become soldiers. These girls also face the possibility of forced marriage and sexual violence. If these children have a chance to return home, their lives may still be very difficult. Some children return as orphans. Others are not able to attend school or get a job.


    On this day, children around the world paint their hands red and put their handprints on paper. Along with their red handprint, some children add a personal message to stop the use of child soldiers. Many of the children who participate are former child soldiers. In 2009, the event collected over 250,000 red hands in over 100 countries. These handprints were presented to the UN Secretary in New York City. Other events on this day include marches, petitions, and school awareness programs. Many organizations, such as World Vision, Amnesty International, and Child Soldiers International also host events.

    To participate, make a red handprint, take a photo of it, and share it on social media with #RedHandDay.


    On February 12, 2002, more than 150 governments implemented an optional protocol to outlaw the recruitment of children under 18 in armed conflicts. In 2008, to commemorate this protocol, former child soldiers collected red hand-prints and placed them on paper and banners. They used the red hand to symbolize putting a stop to the use of child soldiers. Since then, the day has been known as Red Hand Day.