More than enough important stamps were issued in the year 2010. According to the already established tradition, StampNews.com picked the most interesting among them from the perspective of the website's editorial team. 2010 was proclaimed International Year of Biodiversity by the United Nations, that's why many last year's stamps were dedicated to this event.
Among this variety StampNews.com singled out the set issued directly by the U.N. postal administration – UNPA. However, this time the first place is kept by the French stamps issued to support the victims of the destructive earthquake in Haiti.
The rating also contains stamps from New Zealand, Switzerland, Denmark, Romania; many are marked by the extraordinary design but simultaneously have a socially significant orientation which allowed their entering in the list of the most important stamps of 2010. Many stamps of this rating are somehow dedicated to children, health and medicine. But let's keep succession.
Aid to Haiti - stamp from France
In January 2010, France released a stamp in a demonstration of solidarity with the victims of Haiti's earthquake. It features the traditional drawing of Marianne and a Red Cross sticker.
For each stamp sold for the price of 1 euro (US$.1.45), the French Red Cross received euro 0,44 (US$. 0.638), to help the victims of Haiti.
In 2004, when a tsunami ravaged Asia and Indonesia, the Post Office also issued a stamp in support of victims. Some 5 million copies of that edition were sold.
School of St Jude stamp
In 2010, the School of St Jude, a charity providing free education to some of the poorest of Tanzanian children launched its first-ever stamp series in conjunction with the Tanzanian Posts Corporation.
This 700 TSH shilling stamp features smiling Prep student Gadiel who represents the 150 new students the School of St Jude takes on each year after a rigorous testing process.
The stamp series promotes the school motto of fighting poverty through education within the country and through the stamps, the rest of the world.
Danish Child Cancer Foundation Charity Stamp + Swiss Cancer League Centenary Special Stamp
In 2010, Denmark issued a charity stamp for the benefit of the Danish Child Cancer Foundation.
The motif shows a child confined to bed, but surrounded by teddies, which symbolise security, warmth and care.
The Swiss Cancer League has been supporting cancer sufferers and their families for one hundred years. The organization counsels the sick and promotes research and prevention. In 2010, Swiss Post issued a special stamp in tribute to the Cancer League's tireless work over the years.
#4. 'Stop Aids' stamps by Slovakia and Netherlands
On 1 December 2010 (World AIDS Day), the Slovak Post issued a stamp under the theme "Fight against AIDS".
World AIDS Day, observed each year, is dedicated to raising awareness of the AIDS pandemic caused by the spread of HIV infection. It is common to hold memorials to honor persons who have died from HIV/AIDS on this day.
This set of stamps was issued in 2010 by the TNT Post, and it was dedicated to the Stop Aids campaign which aims to make anti-retroviral drugs - often unavailable in poorer countries - universally accessible.
#5. Irish Wheelchair Association stamp + Taxi Hand Signs Stamp Issue from South Africa
In 2010, An Post issued a stamp to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Irish Wheelchair (IWA).
Oliver Murphy, the last surviving member of the founding group of eight is featured on the stamp alongside Shane Barker, a young IWA member.
South Africa is probably the only country in the world that has special hand signals that indicate to the taxi driver where his prospective client wants to go.
The hand signals indicating different destinations are depicted on these stamps. The corresponding signs for the blind are also included in the design and they can be felt by a blind person. The raised surface was achieved by applying a layer of lacquer that contains soil from the Soshanguwe School for children with special needs.
#6. Montenegro stamps dedicated to nature protection + Renewable Energy stamps by Lichtenstein
In 2010, the Montenegro Post issued two stamps dedicated to the protection of environment. The stamps feature umbrellas as the allusion on the measures we should realize to save our planet from the harmful consequences of human activities.
In September 2010, Lichtenstein issued three stamps dedicated to the renewable sources of energy.
The set highlights "Hydropower" (face value CHF 1.00), "Wood" (face value CHF 1.40) and "Near-Surface Geothermal Energy" (face value CHF 2.80) as such energy sources.
A distinctive feature of the series is the use of heat-sensitive ink. Imprinted on each stamp is a pictogram representing the particular recoverable energy. This symbol is hidden by black thermal ink which becomes transparent only when a finger is pressed on it, revealing the coloured pictogram. This philatelic novelty thus symbolises the flow of energy.
#7. Holocaust survivor on stamp: Israel - Austria joint issue
These stamps show a portrait of Simon Wiesenthal, an Austrian-Jewish architectural engineer and Holocaust survivor, in a frame in the form of the Star of David, applied using a special printing technology.
In 2010, the technique used in the production of this joint issue was a world premiere! The stamps were manufactured with innovative laser etching and lacing technology as well as laser philatelic perforation.
#8. World Refugee Day Postage Stamp from Korea
In June 2010, the Korean Post released a stamp dedicated to the 10th anniversary of the World Refugee Day.
There are people who were forced to leave their homes because of the sudden outbreak of conflict or war, and those who fled their homeland fearing persecution for reasons including race, religion, ethnicity, political opinion, or membership to a particular social group. There are at present 34 million displaced people in the world who fled from violence and persecution in search of protection.
#9. Australia Post's Wildlife Caring Stamps + International Year of Biodiversity Series by UNPA + US Stamps to the Rescue!
The release of this Australian issue in October 2010 coincided with Wildlife Awareness Month, which aims to raise public consciousness of wildlife rescue and rehabilitation.
The issue was released for Stamp Collecting Month, which aims to bring the enjoyment of stamp collecting to children through educational themes. These particular stamps draw attention to the importance of Australian wildlife carers and their ability to return animals to their native habitat after injury or illness.
In this issue the message about protecting native animals was conveyed not only through the stamps but also through a miniature sheet. The issue was accompanied by a decorative gutter (with a hidden animal included in the design) showing the animals in their natural environments.
In 2010, the United Nations Postal Administration issued six stamps on the theme "International Year of Biodiversity" (IYB 2010).
IYB was a year-long celebration of biological diversity and its value for life on Earth, taking place around the world in 2010. Coinciding with the date of the 2010 Biodiversity Target, the year was declared by the 61st session of the United Nations General Assembly in 2006.
Last spring, the U.S. Postal Service released this pane of 10 special stamps entitled "Animal Rescue: Adopt A Shelter Pet".
The set continued the Postal Service's half-century tradition of promoting attention and awareness of national social issues. The stamps received a boost from talk show host Ellen DeGeneres, a well-known advocate for pet adoption - and Halo, a pet food company she co-owns. After introducing the stamps on the Ellen DeGeneres Show last March, USPS and Halo launched a "Stamps to the Rescue" campaign. Halo set a goal of feeding 1 million shelter dogs and cats by the end of 2010 - and delivered on its promise. Halo has donated food to more than 100 shelters throughout the United States.
The stamps feature photographs of five cats and five dogs taken by veteran stamp photographer Sally Andersen-Bruce. All ten animals were adopted from a shelter in New Milford, CT.
#10. 2010 Stamp for Mental Health by Canada Post
In September 2010, Canada Post issued its third annual fundraising stamp in support of mental health.
Canada Post's two previous Mental Health fundraising stamps have generated nearly $600,000 in funding for non-profit, community based programming that supports individuals and families coping with mental illness.
The 2010 stamp features a mental health patient on the path towards recovery. A tree - the universal symbol of growth, healing and renewal - stands at the summit of a mountain.
As with the previous mental health stamps, a dollar from every booklet sold supports the Canada Post Foundation for Mental Health. Over the last two years the Foundation has distributed $2.5 million in grants to community groups in every region of Canada that provide front-line help to people living with mental illness.