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  • Writer's pictureDr. Candy Ho, Canada

Declaration of Support for a United Nations International Day of Career and Livelihood

Updated: May 2, 2022

Inspired by the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, a global committee of dedicated career development professionals are working to advocate for a United Nations (UN) International Day of Careers and Livelihood. We are seeking help from career development associations, leadership bodies, service delivery organizations, as well as individual career development practitioners, from around the world, to support this initiative.


The scale of pandemic-induced disruption to world economies and their labour markets is unprecedented. The COVID-19 crisis has derailed the careers of millions of citizens around the world. Drivers of change (advancing technologies, growing environmental concerns, aging populations, and evolving trade agreements) are reshaping how we think about work, what constitutes work, and the competencies we need to be productive contributors in the future.

High quality, accessible career services support livelihood development and are a pre-requisite and imperative contribution to decent work (Sustainable Development Goal [SDG] 8, Decent Work and Economic Growth). Careers are unique to each person and are dynamic, unfolding across the lifespan. Careers and livelihoods include how individuals balance their paid and unpaid work, formal and informal learning, and personal life roles.

An International Day of Careers and Livelihood provides opportunities to:

  • inform individuals, organizations and communities of existing career and livelihood tools, programs and services;

  • collaborate nationally and internationally to present workforce and human development innovations;

  • build stronger relationships and alliances between allied professionals (educators, career practitioners, psychologists, social workers and human resource professionals);

  • provide employers with tools and supports to promote recruitment, retention and improved bottom lines within a context of decent working conditions;

  • celebrate career and livelihood exploration through a wide range of activities (career cafes, job fairs, human library events, contests, and other active engagements); and

  • create an engaged stakeholder forum for public policy advisors and decision-makers to work together to improve the lives of citizens around the world through systemic change.

Why Now?

“If not us, then Who? If not now…then When?” - John E Lewis

This is the UN’s Decade of Action. In order to achieve the 17 SDGs by 2030, collaborations and partnerships (SDG 16, Partnerships for the Goals) needs to take place at a massive, accelerated scale.

For this to happen it requires the development a partnering support system able to influence the policy environment, create mechanisms and platforms that can systematically convene stakeholders, and catalyze partnerships.

With your support, it showcases the power of partnerships; within our associations, and our world.

Support the UN International Day of Careers and Livelihood

By signing this declaration, you are confirming your support of the establishment of a UN International Day of Careers and Livelihood. We will be working with a sponsor(s) to develop a resolution for the UN General Assembly to create an International Career and Livelihood Day and your declaration will contribute vitally to the submission.

Stay tuned for an update on how to sign our letter.


The United Nations International Day of Career and Livelihood Team

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