The International Orienteering Federation´s goals regarding the organisation of this annual event are as follows:
Increasing the visibility and accessibility of orienteering to young people, increasing the number of participants both in the schools’ activities, as well and in the clubs’ activities in all countries of National Federations, helping teachers to implement orienteering in a fun and educational way and to get more new countries to take part in orienteering.
Visionary course of action
Each club of all national Orienteering Federations gets in touch with at least one school. As teachers might need help to implement orienteering so the lessons are a fun and exciting experience, the IOF is working on providing teaching materials in different languages. The Global Development Commission of the IOF coordinates and links interested orienteering people from its national federations together in a school orienteering network in order to exchange materials and experiences. After the event, the students get to keep their maps to take home and show to their friends and family.
In May, between the 17th to 23rd of May, any activity held can be organised as a World Orienteering Day event.
In May 2022 the sixth World Orienteering Day was organised around the world. Between May 11th and May 17th 615 events was organised in 65 countries / regions. The total number of participants was 85 406.
The fifth World Orienteering Day took 2021 place both in May and in September during 2021. In May on the 19th and in September on the 8th! Due to the COVID-19 pandemic the total number of participants was lower than previous years. In total 51 regions / or countries organised 841 events and the total number of participants was 135 971.
The World Orienteering Day 2020 was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
It was suppose to be arranged on May 13th, between May 13th and May 19th. No activity was registered as World Orienteering Day events during 2020.
On Wednesday May 15th 2019, the fourth World Orienteering Day took place. The event was bigger then before, with 398 712 participants all around the world taking part in an orienteering event. Schools, clubs and enthusiast all over the world made a fantastic contribution to orienteering.
On Wednesday May 23rd 2018, the third World Orienteering Day took place. It was an even greater success than the previous years, with 358 735 participants all around the world taking part in an orienteering event.
On Wednesday May 24th 2017, the second World Orienteering Day took place. It was an even greater success than last year, with 288 675 participants all around the world taking part in an orienteering event. This is new record, with 35 000 more participants than last year.
On Wednesday May 11th 2016, the first World Orienteering Day was a huge success, with more than 250 000 participants all over the world taking part in an orienteering event. Schools, clubs and enthusiast all over the world made a fantastic contribution and we managed to beat the world record.
The aim of this campaign is to create a “hot topic” among people worldwide and to be part of something bigger! The purpose of the “Rabbit Tour” is to investigate whether this type of activity is feasible in Europe and if it can be developed in 2018 to 3-5 WOD Rabbit Tours worldwide.