International Day of Friendship 2019: History and Significance of the Day
Representative Image (Photo courtesy: AFP)
The International Day of Friendship is celebrated across the globe since 1958. It is also called the World Friendship Day or International Friendship Day. The United Nation observes International Day of Friendship to observe the importance of friendship in promoting peace in many cultures.
First proposed by Paraguay in 1958 as International Friendship Day, it was initially promoted by the greetings' card industry. While the first World Friendship Day was proposed for July 30 in 1958, by the World
Friendship Crusade, on April 27, 2011, the General Assembly of the United Nations declared July 30 as official International Friendship Day. The World Friendship Crusade is a foundation that advances friendship and care among all people paying little respect to their race, religion, and ethnicity.
Notably, the term Friendship Day was coined by Joyce Hall, the founder of Hallmark cards in 1930, and was intended to be on August 2.
In 2011, the UN proclaimed the International Day of Friendship with the idea that friendship between peoples, countries, and cultures can inspire peace efforts and build bridges between communities. According to the United Nations' website, "Through friendship — by accumulating bonds of camaraderie and developing strong ties of trust — we can contribute to the fundamental shifts that are urgently needed to achieve
lasting stability, weave a safety net that will protect us all, and generate passion for a better world where all are united for the greater good."
The UN wanted for the day to involve young people, as future leaders, in community activities that include different cultures and promote international understanding and respect for diversity. It is a UN observance and not a public holiday.