As we celebrate our freedom living in the U.S.A. in July, remember that the world generally seems too filled with hate, fighting and mistrust. We all need to stop and reverse this trend, and one way is to join in on the International Day of Friendship.
In 2011, the United Nations declared July 30 the official International Day of Friendship. Prior to this date, many countries celebrated as well. For example, Paraguay first celebrated this day on July 30, 1958. The United States, countries in South America, India and Malaysia celebrated on various dates in July, August and September. World Friendship Day is a celebrated on June 30 in the United States, and here in Ohio, Oberlin celebrated annually on April 8. In 1998, the U.N. secretary’s wife, Nane Annan, named Winnie the Pooh as the Ambassador of Friendship at the U.N. Who doesn’t love Winnie the Pooh?
It is interesting to note how some associations observe Friendship Day with different customs, by giving the festival different names, and by holding it in on various days or months.
For example, National Friendship Day is the first Sunday in August, Women’s Friendship Day is on the third Sunday in August, the third week of May is the Old Friends, New Friends Week, and February is designated International Friendship Month.
But there is a specific date for the world to promote friendship among all people, cultures and countries. The day is for promoting peace and freedom and for building bridges among different people. People can view it as a day of respect for others and a day to celebrate diversity. Get involved with The World Friendship Crusade, a foundation that promotes friendship and fellowship among all human beings, regardless of race, color or religion.
The United Nations is encouraging governments and local groups to hold events and activities to promote mutual understanding....