The International Day of Happiness is celebrated worldwide every March 20 and was conceptualized and founded by philanthropist, activist, statesman, and prominent United Nations special advisor Jayme Illien to inspire, mobilize, and advance the global happiness movement.
The theme for International Day of Happiness 2019 is Happier Together. The day will also be promoted around the central theme – ‘Share Happiness and be Part of Something Amazing’.
History, Importance & Significance of Happiness Day
The International Day Of Happiness was established in 2012, when all 193 Member states adopted UN resolution 66 281:“International Day Of Happiness”. The first International Day of Happiness was celebrated on March 20, 2013.
The United Nations hosted the first high profile meeting on happiness and well being on 2nd April 2012. The meeting was attended by heads of state, senior delegates and ministers from over thirty countries and by intergovernmental organizations.
United Nations then Secretary General Ban Ki moon, proposed to achieve the parity between social, environmental and economic well being as the three are pillars of Sustainable Development, that seek to end poverty, reduce inequality, and protect our planet – three key aspects that lead to well-being and happiness.
Every year since, more than 7 billion people across the planet share in celebrating this special day, through social media, local, national, global, and virtual events, UN related ceremonies and campaigns.
Initiatives taken to bring happiness
Bhutan recognized the value of national happiness over national income since the early 1970s and famously adopted the goal of Gross National Happiness over Gross National Product. It also hosted a High Level Meeting on “Happiness and Well-Being: Defining a New Economic Paradigm” during the sixty-sixth session of the General Assembly.
The 2014 Day of Happiness campaign asked people to share authentic images of what makes them happy to “Reclaim Happiness” back from the fake commercial images of happiness that we are so often bombarded with. Many tens of thousands of people shared images and the social reach was estimated to be over 13 million people globally.