International Men’s Day (IMD) is an annual international event celebrated on the 19th of November. The objectives of celebrating an International Men’s Day are set out in ‘The Six Pillars of International Men’s Day’. It is an occasion to celebrate boys’ and men’s achievements and contributions, in particular for their contributions to nation, society, community, family, marriage, and childcare. The broader and ultimate aim of the event is to promote basic humanitarian values.
Inaugurated in 1992 on 7 February by Thomas Oaster, the project of International Men’s Day was conceived one year earlier on 8 February 1991. The project was re-initialised in 1999 in Trinidad and Tobago. The longest running celebration of International Men’s Day is Malta, where events have occurred since 7 February 1994.
Jerome Teelucksingh, who revived the event, chose 19 November to honour his father’s birthday and also to celebrate how on that date in 1989 Trinidad and Tobago’s football team had united the country with their endeavours to qualify for the World Cup. Teelucksingh has promoted International Men’s Day as not just a gendered day but a day where all issues affecting men and boys can be addressed. He has said of IMD and its grass roots activists, “They are striving for gender equality and patiently attempt to remove the negative images and the stigma associated with men in our society”.
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Happy international men’s day!