Do your bit: Focus on days highlighting international issues International Days and Observances
World Heritage Day
18 April
The International Day for Monuments and Sites (informally known as the World Heritage Day) was created on 18th April, 1982, by ICOMOS and later approved at the 22nd UNESCO General Conference in 1983.

This special day offers an opportunity to raise public’s awareness concerning the diversity of the world’s heritage and the efforts that are required to protect and conserve it, as well as to draw attention to its vulnerability.

This year, the World Heritage Day focuses on
"Heritage Changes"

The International Day for Monuments and Sites (World Heirtage Day)
2023 theme: Heritage Changes

The Day aims to showcase the myriad ways in which traditional knowledge is or can be employed to address climate change in transformative ways. How can cultural heritage conservation drive climate action? How do local and traditional knowledge systems contribute to developing viable climate adaptation measures?


Some recent World Heritage Day themes include:
  • 2022: Heritage and Climate
  • 2021: Complex Pasts: Diverse Futures
  • 2020: Shared Cultures, Shared Heritage, Shared Responsibility
  • 2019: Rural Landscapes
  • 2018: Heritage for Generations
  • 2017: Cultural Heritage and Sustainable Tourism
  • 2016: Heritage of Sports
  • 2014: The Heritage of Commemoration
  • 2013: Heritage of Education
  • 2012: Celebrating the 40th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention
  • 2011: The Cultural Heritage of Water
  • 2011: The Cultural Heritage of Water
  • 2010: Agricultural Heritage
  • 2009: Heritage and Science
  • 2008: Religious heritage and sacred places
  • 2007: Cultural landscapes and monuments of nature
  • 2006: Industrial Heritage
  • 2005: 40th Anniversary of ICOMOS
  • 2004: Earthen Architecture and Heritage
  • 2003: Underwater Cultural Heritage
  • 2002: 20th Century Heritage
  • 2001: Save our historic villages

Below are a number of general suggestions* for nationally organized activities to mark this event:

  • Visits to monuments and sites, and restoration works, possibly with free admission;
  • Articles in newspapers and magazines, as well as television and radio broadcasts;
  • Hanging banners in town squares or principal traffic arteries calling attention to the day and the preservation of cultural heritage;
  • Inviting local and foreign experts and personalities for conferences and interviews;
  • Organizing discussions in cultural-centers, city halls, and other public spaces.
  • Exhibitions (photos, paintings, etc)
  • Publication of books, post-cards, stamps, posters
  • Awarding prizes to organizations or persons who have made an outstanding contribution to the conservation and promotion of cultural heritage or produced an excellent publication on the subject.
  • Inaugurate a recently restored monument
  • Special awareness raising activities amongst school children and youth
  • Promotion of "twinning" opportunities, defining areas for co-operation; exchange of speakers; organization of meetings and seminars, or the editing of joint publications.
* Source: ICOMOS

Additional Resources:

The preservation and conservation of our heritage - tangible and intangible - is a critical policy objective that has considerable externalities and positive multipliers. These include tourism, job creation and income generation and other issues, especially the creation of pride among an area's residents in their locality to develop it further.

GDRC therefore reaffirms its committment to uphold the objectives of the World Heritage Day, and work towards better understanding of, and action on, promoting and enhancing heritage conservation, particularly in developing countries

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