Dia das Criancas or Children’s Day will be celebrated on 12th October this year in Brazil. It coincides with Brazils’ holiday for its Patron Saint. It is also referred to as ‘Our Lady of Aparecida’ Day. Brazil is one of those countries in this world that have very deep roots in Catholicism. On this day, besides celebrating the importance of children, people also venerate Virgin Mary as Our Lady of Aparecida. This day also marks the finding of the clay statue of Virgin Mary by three fishermen when they were trying to spread their nets. After failing to have any catch, they invoked Our Lady of Aparecida. Their prayers were answered and they came across a clay statue of hers followed by a big catch. They honoured the Governor of Sao Paulo by holding a banquet for him.
The Significance of Children’s Day in Brazil
This day is celebrated by all families in Brazil. The children receive gifts from their respective parents. This day is marked as a holiday and has been the tradition since 12th October, 1923. This was the occasion when the capital of Brazil at that time, Rio de Janeiro, hosted South American Congress for Children. One year after that special event, the city established a holiday in remembrance of Children’s Day. In various other countries around the world, Children’s Day is celebrated in some countries on 14th November while in others, it is celebrated on 20th November and this is the date which has been set by the United Nations’ Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF).
How is Children’s Day celebrated in Brazil?
Children’s Day is considered by all businessmen and retailers in Brazil as one of the most important day for business and sales. Since the nineteen fifties, this particular day has generated lot of interest as a toy manufacturer generated a marketing scheme for this holiday and called it `Robust Baby Week’. Many retailers, since then, have invested in advertisement campaigns for the week surrounding this day in October. This year, Brazilians are in treat for a good time as the Red Cross Organisation in Brazil has planned a celebration for children, especially those of the refugees who are residing in the country. These children would be receiving gifts and treats from various volunteers.
Colleges and schools in Brazil have the entire week declared as a holiday. Teenagers utilise this period as an exciting vacation time and hey use an opportunity to travel along with their friends. This period could be considered as a spring break in its Brazilian version. This is a culturally significant holiday. As far as children are considered, this week is considered bigger than even the Christmas season.
The celebrations all over the country signify that Children’s Day has been dedicated to show children in the country that they are appreciated and deeply valued. UNICEF also attaches plenty of value to this day and points out that children have to be properly engaged in their growing years as they develop so that they go on to become building blocks in a society. Children have a definite part to play in the development of a community.