annually on December 22nd (since 1999)
First celebrated in 1999, Abilities Day honors and celebrates people with disabilities and their caregivers. Disabilities can be invisible or visible, can be minimal or severe, and can affect people at any age or place in life. Caregivers labor hard to ensure that those with severe disabilities are comfortable and are able to live to their fullest. Many centers for independent living and hospitals have celebrated Abilities Day, and it has been marked by disability rights organizations such as ADAPT, AAPD, and NDP. Those taking part in the day show their solidarity by wearing white ribbons, or by placing them on Christmas trees and wreaths. The day was created by Paul Benjamin-Dielman Cannaday, an advocate for people with disabilities and the editor and owner of Disability Grapevine.
How to Observe
Observe the day by honoring those with disabilities and their caregivers. One way to do so is to wear a white ribbon or to place a white ribbon on any wreaths or Christmas trees you have. If the circumstance is appropriate, you could wish a "Happy Abilities Day" to people you know who have disabilities. If you know someone who is a caregiver, you could use the day to express gratitude to them, through words of thanks or by giving them a gift.