The orange ribbon is a symbol adopted for a very wide variety of uses in different places. It was most recently used worldwide to promote awareness of self-harm on March 1, 2012. March 1 is designated as Self-injury Awareness Day (SIAD) around the world. On this day, some people choose to be more open about their own self-harm, and awareness organisations make special efforts to raise awareness about self-harm. Some people wear an orange awareness ribbon or wristband to encourage awareness of self-harm.
In Australia, orange ribbons are worn annually on March 21 to support Harmony Day and the message of a harmonious multicultural society. First organized in 1996, by the next year the 'Orange Ribbon' was embraced by thousands of people across Australia and was worn by members of the all sides of politics at the 1997 Australia Day celebrations in capital cities Australia-wide.
Orange ribbons were also worn on Fridays in support of the release of Australian citizen David Matthew Hicks during his detention in Guantanamo Bay for 5 years without charge. It was originally an initiative called 'Orange Fridays' supported by Amnesty International, demanding that David Hicks be returned to Australia to face a fair trial or be released.
In Botswana, the National Association for the Preservation of the Botswanan Mongoose uses an orange ribbon as the symbol for its annual fund-raising competition, held amongst children under the age of 15.
In Canada, orange ribbons are worn as an awareness ribbon symbolizes Addiction Recovery. The campaign was launched on October 1, 2004 by the non-profit group R.A.F.T. for their first “Walk for Recovery”. It has since been adopted by a number of other support groups who battle addictions.
Orange ribbons have also been worn to support the New Democratic Party candidate Nicolas R. Thibodeau in Mount Royal. The Orange Ribbon Foundation concern is to support Integrity, Democracy, Equality, Environment and Security in the political ring. The campaign was launched on January 23, 2007 when he was reinvestited a year after his first attempt to represent Mount royal constituents.
In the province of New Brunswick in Canada, orange ribbons are worn in response to the New Brunswick government's plan to sell many of the assets of New Brunswick Power (NB Power) to Hydro-Québec. The ribbons serve many purposes including making the public aware of the proposed sale, and making the government aware of the public opposition to the deal.
In Canada and North American the orange brings awareness to Thank a Youth Worker Day. Celebrated on the first Thursday of May each year to acknowledge the hard work Child and Youth Care Professionals do for our children, youth and families across Canada and North America. For more information visit the Canadian Council of Child and Youth Care Associations http://www.cyccanada.ca
In Austria on the 18 May 2008 at the Austrian Woman's Run 3000 woman were running with an orange ribbon in support of human rights in Tibet. On the 27th of April 2008 at the Vienna City Marathon 2300 athletes were wearing an orange ribbon in support for human rights in Tibet. The Initiative Go Orange for Tibet aims to encourage sportsmen to highlight human rights violation in Tibet before, during and after the Olympic Games 2008 in Beijing through an orange ribbon.
In Italy marathon winner Marija Vrajic (CRO) and 1060 other participants of the Night Marathon in Jesolo & Cavallino Treporti on the 7th of June 2008, wore an orange ribbon for Human Rights in Tibet.
In Israel, orange ribbons indicate opposition to the Israel "disengagement" plan of 2004 (blue ribbons indicate support). The color was adopted by disengagement opponents on advice from Adir Zik. Although the disengagement was executed in 2005, supporters continue to use the color as a symbol of general opposition to further withdrawals. Often written on the post-Disengagement ribbons is the phrase "לא נשכח ולא נסלח" ("we will not forget and we will not forgive").
In the United States, the orange ribbon shows support to end mass incarceration, to reverse a 40 year campaign to "Get tough on crime," and "End the war on drugs," both propaganda to give legal reasons to target poor black and brown people for profiling, stop and frisk, arrest, incarceration, and mandatory minimum sentencing for drug violations. See more at Michelle Alexander's book, http://newjimcrow.com/, which through education, has raised awareness of one of the worst injustices of our time.
In the United States, the orange ribbon Multiple Sclerosis Awareness as well as Cancer/Lupus/Leukemia Awareness.
In the United States, the orange ribbon has been officially registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office as the Animal Guardian Ribbon, a symbol used to raise public awareness of at-risk animals. The Animal Guardian Ribbon was created in 2003 by Rational Animal, a nonprofit media animal advocacy group in conjunction with the Mayor’s Alliance for New York City’s Animals. At-risk animals are defined as those “non-human animals who suffer from neglect or abuse or whose very lives and well-being are in jeopardy.”
In the United States, the orange ribbon shows support for the ACLU Close Guantánamo Campaign. In the San Francisco Bay Area activist group Act Against Torture uses it as part of their campaign to close Guantanamo Bay and other U.S. detention facilities, in reference to the orange jumpsuits which detainees are made to wear.
A reflective orange ribbon is used by the American Road & Transportation Builders Association Transportation Development Foundation to promote work zone safety awareness, and to honor roadway construction workers who have died at work.
On Forest Service land, Blue is for cutting and Orange is for leaving. Hunters wear orange to make them easy to see, so other hunters will not shoot at them.