Thursday, July 18, 2013


Friendship Day
The International Friendship Day celebrations traditionally take place on the first Sunday of August in many places in the world. There are other places in the world that celebrate a Friendship Day on another date.

During the twentieth century, there were several initiatives for the celebration of Friendship Day around the world. In the United States and parts of Asia, the first Sunday of August was reported as the date of greeting and presenting gifts to friends, and at various times similar celebrations were formed in different countries of South America and Europe.

Friendship Day was originally promoted by Joyce Hall, the founder of Hallmark cards in 1930, intended to be 2 August and a day when people celebrated their friendships by sending cards. The second of August was chosen as the centre of the largest lull between holiday celebrations. Friendship Day was promoted by the greeting card National Association during the 1920s but met with consumer resistance - given that it was her too obviously a commercial gimmick to promote greetings cards. By the 1940s the number of Friendship Day cards available in the US had dwindled and the holiday largely died out there. There is no evidence to date for its uptake in Europe; however, it has been kept alive and revitalised in Asia, where several countries have adopted it.

The idea of a World Friendship Day was first proposed on 20 July 1958 by Dr. Artemio Bracho during a dinner with friends in Puerto Pinasco, a town on the River Paraguay about 200 miles north of Asuncion, Paraguay.
The initiative to establish an internationally recognized Friendship Day had a historical antecedent, the World Friendship Crusade (Cruzada Mundial de la Amistad). Designed by Dr. Ramón Artemio Bracho in Puerto Pinasco, Paraguay, in 1958, it was a campaign aimed to promote friendship between human beings so that a culture of peace would be fostered. As a result of this idea, July 30 was set as Friendship Day (Día de la Amistad).

In Argentina, Dr. Enrique Ernesto Febbraro, a native of Lomas de Zamora (which in recognition of his initiative is the Provincial Capital of Friendship by city ordinance and also the headquarters of the World Association for Understanding), professor of psychology, philosophy, and history, musician, dentist, and founder of the Rotary Clubs of San Cristóbal and Balvanera in Buenos Aires, created Friend's Day after sending four thousand letters to a hundred countries around the world (to which he received 700 replies) upon realizing that, by watching the Apollo 11 landing, for the first time all mankind was united. The first official recognition of the day came from the government of Buenos Aires Province with Decree 235/79, which authorized the celebration and made it official.

In Argentina the Friend's Day exists since 1968 and that is the 20th of July. According to a document from the Brazilian Government, Friend's Day in Brazil is the 18th of April! But, the same document says that the 20th of July is Friendship Day.
Friend's Day (Spanish: Día del Amigo, Portuguese: Dia do Amigo) is observed every year on July 20 in Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay and on July 30 in Paraguay.

In honor of Friendship Day in 1998, Nane Annan, wife of UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, named Winnie the Pooh as the world's Ambassador of Friendship at the United Nations. The event was co-sponsored by the U.N. Department of Public Information and Disney Enterprises, and was co-hosted by Kathy Lee Gifford. 

On  27 July 2011 the 65th Session of the United Nations General Assembly declared 30 July as "International Day of Friendship".

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