The year 1990 was proclaimed as the International Literacy Year by the General Assembly in December 1987.
Illiteracy is a major concern of the United Nations as over 900 million women and men are illiterate. The right to education proclaimed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is yet to be realized. The subject of International Literacy Year is a very vital and urgent one for society. The goal of the Year is to highlight the global effort that is being made to meet basic learning needs and provide an education for all. In an unprecedented partnership, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as the lead organization along with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations’ Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the World Bank are launching a world-wide effort to equip people with the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes they need to live in dignity, to improve their own lives and to contribute to the development of their communities and nations.