International Day of Forests: History, Theme and Significance


Every year, March 21 is celebrated as the International Day of Forests. The day is aimed at raising public awareness about the values, significance, and contributions of the forests to balance the life cycle on the earth. Various organisations, private and government, work together on this day to enlighten people not only about the forests at large but also the trees and vegetation that exists outside of the forested areas. The day is celebrated to make people aware of  the importance of the green cover for not only today but also for all future generations.

International Day of Forests: History

Previously, the 16th session of the Conference of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) voted to “World Forestry Day” in 1971. Then, from 2007 to 2012, the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) held six Forest Days. Partnering with Collaborative Partnership on Forest, 2011 was declared as the Year of Forests.

On November 28, 2012, The United Nations General Assembly declared that March 21 shall be celebrated as International Day of Forests (IDF).

International Day of Forests: Theme

Each year, the Collaborative Partnership on Forest (which is an arm of United Nations Forum on Forests) decides on a theme for the forest day. International Day of Forests 2021 theme has been declared as is “Forest restoration: a path to recovery and well-being”.

According to the official video promo of the day, “when we take a step to restore forests, we take a part in something much bigger.”

This year’s theme encourages replanting and recreating lost forests to return lost habitats to millions of plants and animals.

International Day of Forests: Significance

On International Day of Forests, the agency encourages countries to “undertake local, national and international efforts to organize activities involving forests and trees, such as tree planting campaigns.”

By promoting forests’ sustained survival, we ensure our economy, ecosystem, and species also continue to thrive. The day promotes Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) where forest-dependent communities can continue to grow and come out of poverty.


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