Be a trendsetter this Friendship Day

Silhouettes of youth jumping at sunset
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DR TERESA JOSEPH, FMA, an educationist and youth counsellor, goes back to the origins of Friendship Day, and suggests ways and means to make this year’s event really significant.

Sunday, 5 August 2018, is Friendship Day, this year. How did Friendship Day originate? A walk down memory lane reveals that to celebrate the significance of friends in each one’s life, a day was set apart for friendship in the U.S. The U.S. Congress in 1935 made a Proclamation to this effect and the first Sunday of August was declared as a holiday in the U.S. in honour of friends. On 27 April 2011, the United Nations General Assembly, announced 30 July as International Friendship Day. Now India and several other countries celebrate Friendship Day on the first Sunday of August.

On Friendship Day people meet friends and exchange cards and flowers to express their love and appreciation. A number of social and cultural organizations celebrate Friendship Day by hosting programmes and get-togethers. In the spirit of the occasion, it is likely to find people spending Friendship Day in the company of their best friends. Jubilations and celebrations for Friendship Day come in days before the actual day as everyone is busy making friends feel how much they mean to them.

Distance is never a barrier to connect with friends and to convey love and thoughtfulness. Today’s teen friendships are not as different as we think, affirms Joanna Yau in her article From Yearbooks to Instagram and Snapchat. “We learned that there are many actual similarities between how teens interact online and offline.” Her research team talked with over 50 teens about how they communicate on social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat (

Just a click of the mouse or a quick call puts one swiftly in touch with a best friend. SMS, Friendship Day e-cards, friendly chat, Instagram and Snapchat, oh the magic of friendship offers one wings to fly high! From Friendship Day cards to friendship bands, it is amazing to see teens compete with one another to spot who gets the most chic or the highest number of bands. Friendship Day parties and bashes too are very much a part of the celebration. Certainly all these are great means to widen the circle of friendship. But what more can we bring to Friendship Day, this year?

Going beyond gifts and parties

Caught up in the craze of high commercialization and gift marketers who entice youngsters to buy gifts for their friends, is there a way to move beyond gifts and parties? Do we know how to fly away from the charming temptation of those who offer special discounts for holding Friendship Day bashes? Can you settle for bringing friends home to give them a taste of your mom’s best dishes? Think of organizing something together where your friends and their parents can all meet together and spend a great time together.

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Dr Teresa Joseph

Dr Teresa Joseph

Dr Teresa Joseph, FMA, is a Salesian Sister who holds a Master’s degree in Science of Education. She has authored several books including Dream Big, Dream True and Teachers Are Like Stars published by Better Yourself Books.