Democracy is a universally recognized ideal and is one of the core values and principles of the United Nations. Democracy provides an environment for the protection and effective realization of human rights. The UN promotes good governance, monitors elections, supports civil society to strengthen democratic institutions and accountability, ensures self-determination in decolonized countries, and assists in the drafting of new constitutions in post-conflict nations.
UNDEF funds projects that empower civil society, promote human rights, and encourage the participation of all groups in democratic processes. The large majority of UNDEF funds go to local civil society organizations -- both in the transition and consolidation phases of democratization. In this way, UNDEF plays a novel and unique role in complementing the UN's other, more traditional work -- the work with Governments -- to strengthen democratic governance around the world.
International days and weeks are occasions to educate the public on issues of concern, to mobilize political will and resources to address global problems, and to celebrate and reinforce achievements of humanity. The existence of international days predates the establishment of the United Nations, but the UN has embraced them as a powerful advocacy tool. We also mark other UN observances.