Top 5: Random October ‘holidays’

Holly New

No. 5: National Cat Day

Break out your kitty litter and cough up your fur balls: Oct. 29 is the day to celebrate National Cat Day.

This day, founded in 2005 by animal welfare advocate Colleen Paige, is designed to raise awareness about the millions of cats who live in animal shelters and on the streets. Although difficult for many college students, consider adopting a cat and making a difference in alleviating the strain for animal shelters.

As an avid cat lover, I will definitely be spending this day hugging my handsome cat, Bob, and trying to pick the fur off my clothes.

No. 4: International Newspaper Carrier Day

Oct. 12 is International Newspaper Carrier Day. This lesser recognized day commemorates the hundreds of thousands of newspaper carriers who, according to the Newspaper Association of America, “deliver more than 44 million newspapers to more than 100 million readers every day.”

I actually spent more than seven years delivering newspapers in my hometown, so I know how uncomfortable newspaper carrying can really be.

In the age of technology, newspaper carriers help keep alive the tradition of getting the news delivered.

No. 3: International Day of the Girl Child

In 2011, the United Nations named Oct. 11 International Day of the Girl Child to “recognize girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world.” This year’s theme is “Innovating for Girls’ Education.”

Girls and women around the world live in societies where they are looked down upon simply because of their gender.

Ladies, let’s take this day to spread awareness about the plight of females and the transformative power education has and to remember why we love being women.

No. 2: Anti-Slavery Day

Here in America, this day seems fairly overlooked, but the Parliament in the United Kingdom declared in 2010 that Oct. 18 would be Anti-Slavery Day.

There are more than 168 million child laborers, 85 million of whom are in hazardous work that is “directly endangering their health, safety and moral development,” and almost 21 million people are victims of forced labor, according to the International Labour Organization, a United Nations agency.

We should all take this day to learn more about modern slavery and what we can do to help.

No. 1: World Mental Health Day

Oct. 10 is World Mental Health Day. The World Health Organization states that “more than 450 million people suffer from mental disorders” and many more have mental problems.

Mental health is not only an integral part of overall health, but an often overlooked one.

In connection with this, Oct. 10 is also National Depression Screening Day. Everyone should take the time to look at their mental well-being and not be afraid to seek help if necessary.

NIU has many resources on campus for mental health concerns, and I encourage everyone to take advantage of them.

When it comes to mental health, stigmas still exist.

We all need to work together to help spread awareness of a very important day.