Today marks the United Nations International Day of Peace. First observed in 1981, it is an opportunity for citizens of the world to come together in the spirit of prosperity and partnership for all. The focus for this year’s International Day of Peace is Sustainable Development Goals: Improving Life Around the Globe. While that may seem like a lofty, unattainable goal, we can all do our part to make the world a better place, and even improve our own outlook in the process.
There are many ways to get involved today, including a collective moment of silence at noon local time. Jane Goodall’s Roots and Shoots program offers a myriad of activities and ideas to get kids thinking about the global community. If you enjoy yoga, consider participating in the Global Mala Project on this day, which brings together the yoga community around the globe in collective practice.
These are all wonderful ways to observe this special day, and these simple steps may inspire you to do more. You don’t have to quit your job and travel to a third world country to make the world a more peaceful place – there are endless opportunities in our own communities. The UN lists a dozen categories that can have a direct impact on peace, from the environment to social justice to the arts and beyond. How can you incorporate this peace movement into your life not just today, but every day? Here are three tips for making a difference in the place where you live:
- Meditate. Meditation has been shown to reduce stress, improve concentration, and even slow aging, among other health benefits. Even some short mindfulness breathing exercises can offer benefits. After all, when you take care of yourself, you are better able to help others.
- Make a difference in women’s and children’s health and safety. It is estimated that one in three women worldwide has been a target of rape or domestic violence. Every community offers organizations that support these victims – including The Family Place and Genesis Women’s Shelter in the Dallas Fort Worth metropolitan area. These groups can always use your time, money, and donations.
- Feed those less fortunate. Hunger is a worldwide epidemic that is surprisingly prevalent in the United States – 1 in 6 Americans face hunger. Here in North Texas, where Actifirm headquarters are located, North Texas Food Bank provides more than 170,000 meals daily. Involvement can be as simple as dropping off your pantry overflow, and financial donations and volunteer hours are always welcome.
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