International Friendship Day

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picture of figures holding hands in front of globe S K

This month, 61 years ago, a group of friends meeting for dinner and conviviality proposed the idea that friendships help humanity. This idea was championed by the World Friendship Crusade and in 2011, the 65th General Assembly of the UN passed Resolution A/RES/65/275: International Friendship Day.  At the passing of the resolution, the UN Secretary-General wrote that the simple idea of International Friendship Day was necessary, “when we see discrimination, malice and cruelty that drive conflicts and atrocities afflicting millions of people today.” Sadly, what he writes is true. The exhibition I encourage you to read this month is Speaking Out About Genocide.

You will see that International Friendship day is not a glib idea or saccharine wish. It is a much-needed call for us to recognize that in this small world, friendship plays a large part in being a good neighbor and an ethical global citizen. A friend is a comrade in a struggle or cause, and there are many people, many cultures, many sub-cultures who need friends. Be a friend and do your part this International Friendship Day. Make it more than a day to exchange happy greetings. Go make friends with someone unlike you and get to know what interests them. We should always be able and ready to speak out and stand up.

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