It was 35 years ago when the United Nations (UN), under resolution 36/67, decided that the whole world should observe a day in which a cease fire and non-violence should prevail among Earth’s inhabitants. But it wasn’t until the year 2005 that it was decided to celebrate International Day of Peace simultaneously all over the planet.
That’s how, for eleven consecutive years, throughout this whole day, social leaders, public and private institutions and world authorities try to promote and strengthen peace ideals between peoples and nations.
The International Day of Peace offers a common date to think about how we can contribute individually to ensure that the world’s resources we count on are used in a sustainable manner, reducing the potential for armed conflict and paving the way to a sustainable future, “the future we desire”.
Most activities that take place con this day are dedicated to children, so from an early age, they can learn that there are non-violent ways to solve difficulties and problems between people.
This year’s theme is “The Sustainable Development Goals: Building Blocks for Peace,” trying to bring to light the importance that all social groups work together towards peace.
International Day of Peace and Nobel Prize
The Nobel Peace prize has been granted to the UN, its specialized or related agencies, funds, programs and members of staff, a total of eleven times.
One of its agencies, the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), also known as the UN Refugee Agency, has received this honor at two different times.
Two Secretary Generals, Kofi Annan, and Dag Hammarskjöld were also awarded by the Norwegian Nobel Committee for their work in the search for peace in the entire world.
Messengers of Peace
As the UN website explains, “United Nations Messengers of Peace/Goodwill Ambassadors are distinguished individuals, carefully selected from the fields of art, literature, science, entertainment, sports or other fields of public life, who have agreed to help focus worldwide attention on the work of the United Nations”.
In the current team of distinguished individuals in search for world peace, there are two Latin Americans: Brazilian writer Paulo Coelho, and acclaimed orchestra director and pianist of Argentinian/Israeli descent, Daniel Barenboim. This dynamic duo is joined by Stevie Wonder, Elie Wiesel, Charlize Theron, Edward Norton, Yo-Yo Ma, Midori, Lang Lang, Jane Goodall, Michael Douglas and Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein.
Let’s join this group of notable figures, as human as every one of us, who strive to help others, in search for peace and making this planet a place where we can live in, without war and conflict.
“Let us all work together to help all human beings achieve dignity and equality; to build a greener planet; and to make sure no one is left behind.” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.