International Day of Friendship

The United Nations proclaimed in 2011 that “International Day Of Friendship” be observed! The UN wanted a day that encouraged friendship between people, countries, and cultures. In the hope that it inspires peace efforts and builds bridges between communities. The day of friendship had been celebrated across the world in years prior but it never became an “official” day until the UN declared this day.

To mark the International Day of Friendship, the UN encourages governments, organisations, and community groups to hold events, activities and initiatives that promote solidarity, mutual understanding and reconciliation.

Friendship is the most critical relationship after family and in some cases it even surpasses family. All human beings need a friend by their side, and this starts at a very young age. The friendship grows as people also grow old and the more time they spend together, the bonds that bind friendship becomes even stronger. The challenges humans face every day become lighter when they face them with a companion, and that sense of solidarity plays a huge role in helping most people get through the most difficult of situations. That is the power of friendship, and that is why the International Day of Friendship was set aside to remind people of the importance of friends and to give them an opportunity to sit back and appreciate the value that their friends bring into their lives.

A quote by Celeste Barnard is a good reminder,

“Friends are like flowers. They fill the world with beauty”.

How to Celebrate International Day of Friendship

What Children Can Do To Celebrate International Day of Friendship

  • Draw/Paint Friend portraits
  • Create a classroom book of friend pictures or friend stories
  • Thread friendship bracelets
  • Give small homemade gifts to a friend
  • Special morning tea
  • Tell a friend what’s special about them
  • Connect with another centre/service in a different country and build a friendship via skype

What Early Childhood Educators Can Do To Celebrate International Day of Friendship

  • Express gratitude to one another verbally or in a note
  • Shared Morning Tea/Lunch
  • Complete the “Share the Love” Task the week prior
  • Reconnect with a special person in your life
  • Appreciate all the good in life
  • Connect with another centre/service in a different country and build a friendship via skype
  • Remind yourself of role modelling being a “good friend”

And never forget:

“Good Friends are Like Stars – you don’t always see them but you know they are there”. (Anon)

Have an amazing International Day of Friendship!