Whatever happened to Lifeboat Day and Bob-a-Job week?
Maybe there should be some form of control, by a committee or council; like the Charities Commission or the Dubious Goals Panel or something, to allocate specific calendar spots to the various groups who claim them.
My mailbox is regularly filled with announcements that; in order to highlight a certain issue, such and such a day has been declared "insert name here Day!". Truth is, you can't highlight them all.
I’ve mentioned before in these pages how the modern habit of allocating ‘days’, ‘weeks’ and ‘months’ to causes and campaigns, no matter how worthy, seems to me to be counterproductive.
When I was younger there were very few, but they were mightily effective.
There was Poppy Day, of course, still solemnly observed and still raising funds for our veterans and families of the fallen.
But whatever happened to Lifeboat Day, when the RNLI would have volunteers all over the place raising money for new equipment?
And how about Bob-a-Job week when thousands of teenage boys would be mercilessly exploited into performing herculean tasks of gardening, car washing and general labouring all worth much more than the measly shilling (that’s 5p to those of you who don’t know) that was on offer?
Today’s events seem to have lost something in the process.
In the past few days, for example, we’ve had Whale Day and Elephant Day.
You may have missed them, I noticed only because I’m hooked on social media where it seems the simple ‘click’ of a repost is what passes for campaign support in these online times of ours.
One other that may have passed you by, even though it has been an institution for 25 years, was ‘Left-Handers Day” on August 13th.
Since 1992 this has been the day when the south-pawed ‘awkward squad’ (as my PE teacher used to call them) gets to celebrate everything left-handed.
As part of our continuing search into all corners of the human condition we thought a quarter century of social awareness was worth a little more than a retweet from us.
There used to be a special week for blood and organ donation appeals too, actually this year’s National Transplant Week will start on Monday 5th September and WHO Blood Donor Day will be on June 14th next year.
One wonders if many will notice in the crowded marketplace of causes and campaigns because, sadly, the scarcity of both is a perennial problem which is steadily getting worse.
It may surprise you to know that less than a third of the UK adult population has signed up to be an organ donor, despite the fact that an application form is sent with every driving licence.
I was shocked to read that there were, on average, only 3,000 deaths a year which resulted in an organ transplant.
In April 2014 the government’s advisers on transplants and transfusions took the controversial step, in the face of some very vocal opposition, to allow for the transplantation of organs from cancer sufferers.
This week we received an update on the results of that new policy.
In the interest of full disclosure following that link will take you to our story page which contains another link to put yourself on the donor register, please consider it.
One condition that affects an entire gender has had its own day since 1984 but, despite the best efforts of its advocates to promote education and awareness, remains one of the least talked about yet most common human conditions on the planet.
October 18th was declared International Menopause Day by the International Menopause Society to try and ensure that public conversations were started in countries around the world regarding women’s health and place in society.
If you haven’t heard of either it merely demonstrates how hard it is to break through the noise of modern media communications or, some might say, how male concerns continue to dominate our social and political agendas.
Every woman will have to face the issue of menopause during the course of their lives and, contrary to the lofty platitudes of (mostly male) doctors, it’s no small thing.
From the age of about 45, sometimes much younger, a woman’s body will go through the same sort of drastic changes that wrecked our latter teenage years, only this time society seems to make no allowances and provides little support.
Menopause can last up to 15 years and while the severity of its impact can vary from one woman to another it is rare for anyone to escape the experience without some large measure of discomfort and genuine inconvenience, to say the least.
After its initial widespread use HRT has become less popular as a way of managing the problems associated with menopause, largely because studies have shown severe health risks in its use.
Nonetheless, there are some natural remedies which have been proven over many years to offer some level of relief from the main symptoms.
You can’t avoid the symptoms of menopause, only deal with them, which is why we all need to be more aware of the issue; because what is needed is understanding and support, not sympathy, and not just for one day of the year.
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