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Friendship Day celebrates the bond of friendship. Friendship is a very pure relationship marked by unconditional affection. The first Sunday in August is celebrated as Friendship Day every year. Friendship Day has gained popularity over the years, and people in almost all parts of the world celebrate it enthusiastically. It is mainly the influence of the other days which are celebrated like Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Valentine's Day, etc. Friendship Day was also introduced much later, but has gained popularity quickly. Now social media has fuelled its appeal and enhanced the celebration by making people exchange information, wishes across the globe, that too at the touch of a button.
There are many versions of how Friendship Day became part of the calendar. It was originally founded by Hallmark in the year 1919 and initially people celebrated their friendship by sending each other cards. Unfortunately, by 1940, the market had completely dried up, which left a great impact on the celebrations too. UN, in the year 1998, named Winnie the Pooh as the world’s Ambassador of Friendship at the United Nations and in April 2011, the United Nations officially recognized 30th July as International Friendship Day.
In the year 1958, on 20 July, “Dr. Ramon Artemio Bracho”, a famous surgeon, during a dinner with friends in Puerto Pinasco, a town on the River Paraguay about 200 miles north of Asuncion, Paraguay, proposed the idea of having a day to celebrate the importance of friendship. He later founded an international Civil Organization, “The World Friendship Crusade” to enhance happiness and friendship among people. He believes that friendship is vital in overcoming all barriers and to maintain fellowship.
Joyce Hall, the founder of Hallmark cards in 1930, wanted to create a day for the people to celebrate their friendships and selected 2nd of August, to promote the sales of gifts and greeting cards. But due to enormous resistance from the public, it was then dropped.
There are many dimensions for Friendship Day. Partying, outings, exchanging gifts, playing games, and generally having a good time with friends are carried out on this day. Wishes and greetings would be exchanged between friends. Those who cannot meet their friends in person renew their bonds by calling friends on the phone or sending text messages through social media.
School students and college students celebrate the occasion with enormous enthusiasm, probably at their favorite hangout, the cafeteria. Gifts are exchanged, and partying with friends and clubbing is common. Many people organize a tour or a short trip to chill out with their friends. “Friendship Bands’ are also tied around each other’s wrists.
Friendship is one of the purest forms of relationship, which asks nothing in return except unconditional love. Celebrating Friendship Day has its unique benefits. It is always said that a person is an aggregate of his seven friends.