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Celebrating International Day of Friendship

Celebrating International Day of Friendship

Thomas Aquinas once said, “There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship.” Through thick and thin, highs and lows, good times and bad, true friends are those who stay with you through everything; they are those you can go to with great news, and seek for help when you struggle. The best friends are the ones who are there throughout the years, even when the business of life makes it challenging to keep in touch.

Friendship can cross the boundaries of race, culture, politics and even international lines. From a global perspective, our world faces constant challenges, crises and forces of division, which undermine the harmony of our global community. To confront these challenges, we must promote and defend a shared spirit of human solidarity—through friendship. So, in 2011, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed today, July 30th, as the International Day of Friendship. According to their website, the U.N. states:

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 International Day of Friendship was first conceived in 1997 as an initiative following a world Culture of Peace proposal. It recognizes the relevance and importance of friendship as a noble and valuable sentiment in people's lives from around the world. Whether you make friends with your next door neighbor, community member or someone who lives halfway across the world, you can celebrate International Day of Friendship. Here’s how.

1. Get to know your neighbors.
One of the easiest ways you can celebrate International Day of Friendship is by simply getting to know your neighbors. How often do we surround ourselves with others, yet barely know anything about them? Your neighbors are the first line of people you can make an effort to know, care for and walk alongside with through life. Make an effort to reach out to the neighbors in your area and get to know them. Take over a plate of cookies, invite them over for dinner or ask them to do something in town. By getting to know your neighbors, you can take the first step in truly building bonds of friendship in the community near you.

2. Be involved with your community.
Speaking of community, why not take your friendships to the next level by being involved with others in your community? Get to know people by joining various clubs and activity groups, or volunteer with an organization to find lifelong friends who share the same values as you. Check out what’s available around you and see how you can join a cause or a club you care about. The more you’re involved with, the more opportunity you will have to meet different people and make new friends.

3. Make friends with somebody different from you.
Finally, take advantage of International Day of Friendship by making an effort to be friends with somebody different from you. This could mean different racially, ethnically, politically or culturally. Oftentimes, we’re naturally attracted to people who have the same background, same appearance and same opinions as us. However, these types of friendships might not challenge us to grow. Instead, be intentional about meeting people who might be different from you, getting to know them and pursuing a genuine friendship with them. This way, you can have a variety of different friends, who can all challenge and strengthen you in different ways.

As Thomas Aquinas said, true friendship is the most prized thing on earth. This International Day of Friendship, celebrate one of our closest human relationships by being mindful of how you make friends. Get to know your neighbors, be involved with your community and make friends with somebody different from you in order to truly build bonds across boundaries. You may find the more friends you have, the more joy flows through your life.

Our Impact in 2017

January 1-December 31
  • CAPSA is a non-profit domestic violence, sexual abuse, and rape recovery center serving Cache County and the Bear Lake area.

  • YCC Family Crisis Center is a domestic violence shelter and rape crisis center provide services 24/7 to victims and their children.

  • Utah Legal Services (ULS) is a nonprofit law office incorporated in 1976 committed to making equal justice a reality by providing free legal help in non-criminal cases to low-income Utahns.

  • South Valley Services is a domestic violence service provider in West Jordan, Utah. We provide safe shelter and supportive services to women, men and their children who have been impacted by domestic violence.

  • Today, the YWCA is Utah’s most comprehensive provider of family violence services; our programs include walk-in services and a crisis line, emergency shelter, transitional housing, children’s programs, and a vast array of supportive services.

  • Established in 1990, Seekhaven assists survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault rebuild their lives. Serving Grand County and Southeastern Utah, Seekhaven provides a wide range of essential services including client advocacy, emergency shelter, and transition assistance.

  • Peace House is dedicated to ending family violence and abuse through education, outreach, support services, and safe housing.

  • New Hope Crisis Center has been serving Box Elder County for 30 years. Our mission is to provide all-inclusive, integrated, victim-centered services to stabilize and support individuals, families, and our community.

  • Founded in 1984, The Center for Women and Children in Crisis has been in continuous operation for 33 years. Our mission is to provide a caring, advocating, safe, and educationally based environment for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.

  • Our organization advocates for victims of domestic violence, rape and sexual assault, and the homeless. Serving people in Sevier, Piute, Millard, Sanpete and Wayne counties of Utah.

  • The DOVE Center is the only area agency providing safe-shelter, crisis intervention, and prevention for clients who have been victimized by violence in their home – whether by a family member or cohabitant – that also serves victims of rape and sexual assault.

  • Founded in 1922, Legal Aid Society of Salt Lake is a non-profit organization that promotes safety, stability and self-sufficiency for low income families and individuals, as well as victims of domestic violence, through effective, efficient legal advocacy and assistance.

  • Canyon Creek Services provides free and confidential services for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault in Iron, Beaver and Garfield Counties.

  • Valley Behavioral Health is a nonprofit network of clinics providing treatment for behavioral conditions, addictions, psychiatric conditions, autism and other chronic health conditions. We treat chronic lifelong conditions as well as temporary conditions triggered by traumatic life events. Our programs are tailored to people of all ages and every social, cultural and economic situation.

  • Preserve the heritage. Enhance the wellbeing. Strengthen the future of the People.

  • Our Mission: To bring hope, justice, and healing to victims of domestic violence murder by providing holistic non-profit legal representation in the civil, probate and family courts.

  • At Amethyst Center for Healing we are dedicated to helping individuals, families, and communities recover from trauma and abuse, so that we may all live peaceful, empowered lives.

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