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International Day for Tolerance


“Walk with me for a while, my friend—you in my shoes, I in yours—and then let us talk.”
― Richelle E. Goodrich

When was the last time you interacted with someone who has a different perspective than you? When’s the last time you learned something about someone else’s culture or background? The International Day for Tolerance celebrates open-mindedness and listening.

It was started by the UN General Assembly with the goal of raising awareness to understanding of others. In 1995, UNESCO created the Declaration of Principles on Tolerance as a way to define and provide awareness of tolerance for any and all governing and participating bodies. Now, we celebrate the International Day for Tolerance every November 16 to help spread tolerance and raise awareness of any intolerance that may still be prevalent in the world today. Although we should be tolerant every day, it’s always good to have one occasion to remind us just how important tolerance is.

What Can I Do?

  • Listen to Others Who Have Different Viewpoints – Listening to others is a great way to open your perspective and take a better look at the world and how you perceive it. Tolerance and intolerance can only be identified by listening more to those who may have suffered at the hands of intolerance and hearing what they have to say.
  • Read About Different Cultures – Reading about different cultures or nationalities is one of the best ways to help break down your intolerances that you may not know you have, as well as help increase your awareness of other intolerances throughout the world. In order to celebrate tolerance, you may often need to first make yourself aware of intolerance.
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