Suicide is a complex problem, which involves psychological, social, biological, cultural and environmental factors. If you want to find out more about this, visit the official website of World Day to prevent suicide.
In the last 45 years suicide rates have increased by 60% worldwide. Suicide is one of the top three causes of death among people aged between 15 and 44 years old in some countries, and the second leading cause in the group aged 10 to 24; and these figures do not include suicide attempts which are up to 20 times more frequent than completed suicide cases.
Seeing literacy as “a prerequisite for effective social participation and a tool of empowerment at individual and community levels,” Koichiro Matsuura, director general of UNESCO, recalled in his message that the United Nations Decade for Literacy (2003-2012), “directed and coordinated by UNESCO, aims to make greater efforts at the national and international levels to achieve the objective of Dakar (World Education Summit, 2000) of halving by 2015 illiteracy levels.”
The situation as regards illiteracy is particularly critical in sub-Saharan Africa, the Arab States and in South Asia and West, regions where literacy rates reach only 60% (versus approximately 99% in countries OECD). Over 70% of adult illiterates worldwide live in only nine countries, including India (34%), China (11%), Bangladesh (6.5%) and Pakistan (6.4%).
Although the literacy rate has increased globally by 10% during the last twenty years, representing the access of hundreds of millions of people to the world of writing, illiteracy still affects 785 million adults and threatens to compromise the future of 100 million children who are not attending school.
Although it has been reduced by 10% in the past 20 years, illiteracy still affects 785 million adults, two thirds of them women. The International Literacy Day, celebrated every September 8, aims to alert about this. The fight against illiteracy is one of the pillars of Education for All, a flagship activity of UNESCO.