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Everyday is a great day to celebrate your friends, but did you know there’s an official day to celebrate your favorite people? Día de Amistad, or International Friendship Day, is a holiday celebrated around the world.

The date may change depending on where you’re celebrating, but the official date recognized by the United Nations is July 30th. This day celebrates the concept of friendship bridging borders and connecting people, no matter their differences. Through friendship, people can build joyful connections and trust. The holiday celebrates a united passion for a better world and common good.

Día de Amistad is celebrated in a variety of ways around the world. Spending time with friends is the most important, so many people plan dinner parties or meet ups to enjoy quality time together. People also love to give their close friends small gifts or trinkets, like friendship bracelets or flowers.

AMIGOS volunteers in Panama

In some Latin American countries, they celebrate by playing “Invisible Friend.” Not unlike a winter holiday gift exchange, a group of friends will draw names in secret. They will pick out a special gift for their friend, then they all give each other the presents at a party on July 30th!

Though a version of Día de Amistad has been started in different countries throughout history, the idea of celebrating international friendship started in Paraguay in 1958 while Dr. Ramon Artemio Bracho was having dinner with friends in Puerto Pinasco, a town on about 200 miles north of Asunción, Paraguay.

During this dinner, the World Friendship Crusade was born. The World Friendship Crusade is a foundation  that promotes friendship and fellowship among all human beings, regardless of race, color, or religion. Thanks to this group, Paraguay has been celebrating Friendship Day ever since!

AMIGOS volunteers in Nicaragua, summer 2017

After lobbying by the World Friendship Crusade, the United Nations decided to officially mark July 30th as the International Day of Friendship and to invite all members to observe the holiday in accordance with the culture and customs of their own communities.

Día de Amistad is a great reason to celebrate your amigos around the world! Do you want to build friendships beyond borders that last a lifetime? Learn more about our authentic immersion programs here.

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