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20 Mar, 2013

Happiness Celebrations Aim to Reach 100 Million People for UN’s First #HappyDay


LOS ANGELES–(BUSINESS WIRE)–A global happiness celebration starts today as part of a week of activities observing the first-ever International Day of Happiness on March 20.

The #HappyDay celebration, which recognizes acts of generosity, kindness, enthusiasm and connection, is focusing on spreading the message of happiness to 100 million people worldwide.

Last year, all 193 member states of the United Nations declared March 20 the annual International Day of Happiness, a day of solidarity to promote happiness on a global scale.

“We need a new economic paradigm that recognizes the parity between the three pillars of sustainable development,” said Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon during a high-level meeting at U.N. Headquarters in New York. “Social, economic and environmental well-being are indivisible. Together they define gross global happiness.”

Led by Cheers, the world’s first happiness app, and Action for Happiness, a mass movement to promote happiness, the #HappyDay campaign encourages people across the globe to ACT:

A: Affirm the pledge – make a personal pledge to try to create more happiness in the world. Sign the pledge here: http://dayofhappiness.net/pledge

C: Cheer Happy Heroes – celebrate the people who bring happiness to you and others. http://www.chee.rs/celebration/happy-heroes

T: Take part – do something to mark the day and spread some happiness

“Creating a happier society requires action at all levels—from political leaders and institutions to individuals,” said Cheers Founder Farhad Mohit. “When we each make a commitment to bring happiness to others, everyone benefits and the world becomes a happier place. With the help of Action for Happiness and an amazing group of partners all around the world, we hope to reach 100 million people with this message, and respond to Ban Ki Moon’s inspiring call for more Gross Global Happiness.”

The #HappyDay and #HappyHeroes celebrations have already reached more than 500,000 people, including several public figures who have chimed in with their support. Among those lending their support for the campaign are Sir Elton John’s 14-year-old protégé Tallia Storm, and Buddhist leader His Holiness Karmapa Thaye.

The Gross National Happiness Centre in Bhutan, famous for the unique measure of its country’s progress, is also among 35 international happiness partners and scores of events in approximately 20 countries taking place to celebrate the Day of Happiness.

Confirmed events for the Day of Happiness include:

  • Happathon: a global hack for happiness in New York City, San Francisco, Indianapolis, Oslo, Tokyo, London and Bogota to launch a 12-month project to globally crowdsource a vision for the Happiness Economy.
  • Inspiring local events to spread happiness, including a positive message flash mob in a busy London train station, a ‘laughter challenge’ in Hong Kong, and free hugs being offered on the street in Washington, D.C!
  • Screenings of the award-winning “Happy,” the 2011 feature documentary film directed, written, and co-produced by Academy Award nominated filmmaker Roko Belic in Los Angeles, Peru, Madrid, and Bedford, U.K.
  • Olympic Heroes at the House of Lords, the second chamber of U.K. Parliament – happiness economist Lord Richard Layard honours the heroes who bring happiness to other people’s lives.
  • Teams of schoolchildren in Bhutan drawing and painting their Happy Heroes with the heroes celebrated by sharing tea and a happiness meditation.

To make it even easier to get involved, Cheers has created two online celebrations where people from across the globe can share photos and messages about the things that bring happiness to their lives directly from the Web.

The online celebrations include:

Happy Day: Cheer what you’re doing to bring happiness to others! Share your cheer and spread happiness on this important day with the hashtag #happyday

Happy Heroes Celebrate the people and organizations who bring happiness to others. Cheer your Happy Heroes to recognize their cheerful impact! Share your cheers on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #happyheroes

Learn more about the #HappyDay celebration at DayofHappiness.net.