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Observances of the UN International Day of Families organized by chapters of the Universal Peace Federation, May 2012. Theme: "Ensuring Work Family Balance." Affirmed by civilizations and religions …

Observances of the UN International Day of Families organized by chapters of the Universal Peace Federation, May 2012. Theme: "Ensuring Work Family Balance." Affirmed by civilizations and religions for millennia, the family forms the basis of natural procreation, lineage, the honoring of parents and grandparents, and our development as spiritual and rational beings.

UPF regards the family as the school of love and the foundation for a stable society. Marriage between husband and wife lays the foundation for the family. The father and the mother complement one another biologically and psychologically as they raise their children. The family has both private and public functions, promoting both social cohesion and intergenerational solidarity. The love we receive at home provides the framework for fulfilling our potential as human beings.

Social cohesion is learned in the family where members attend to the well-being of one another. Likewise, when families contribute to the well-being of their community, the community prospers, offering benefit and protection for families in return.

The importance of grandparents in promoting intergenerational solidarity cannot be underestimated. They are the repositories of information about the ancestors and the conveyers of tradition and culture. The bond between grandparents and grandchildren is second in emotional power only to that between parents and children. Together, the grandparents, parents, and children form a link between the past, the present and the future.

Every culture throughout the world affirms the central role of the family in promoting social integration, intergenerational solidarity, and a healthy society. Religious traditions such as Confucianism, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Hinduism emphasize the sacred and social significance of the family.

The purpose and ideal of marriage and the family center on procreation, raising children within a committed and faithful relationship of the natural parents, and the development of love and spiritual well-being. However, UPF also acknowledges that no one attains this ideal without education and a supportive social, ethical, political, and cultural environment. For this reason, UPF advocates the development of educational programs that help individuals gain a better understanding of the virtues and skills necessary for the most fulfilling relationships and happy, thriving marriages and families.

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  • 1. Universal Peace Federation Observances of The United NationsInternational Day of Families 2012
  • 2. Observances organized by the Universal Peace FederationAfghanistan Czech Israel Nicaragua St. LuciaAngola Republic Jamaica Niger SurinameArgentina DR Congo Japan Norway TaiwanArmenia Ecuador Kazakhstan Paraguay ThailandAustria Ethiopia Kenya Peru TurkeyBangladesh Finland Lithuania Russia U.K.Belarus Gabon Luxembourg Rwanda U.S.Benin Georgia Malaysia San Marino UkraineBrazil Germany Mali Senegal UruguayCambodia Ghana Marshall Is. South Korea VenezuelaCameroon Guyana Mauritius Sierra Leone ZambiaCanada Iceland Moldova Solomon Is. ZimbabweColombia India Nepal SomaliaCongo Indonesia Netherlands SpainCote dIvoire Ireland New Zealand Sri Lanka
  • 3. UN Theme: Work-Family Balance “On this International Day of Families, let us renew our pledge to promote work-family balance for the benefit of families and society at large.”
  • 4. UPF Theme: “Balance” UPF explored ways to develop a harmonious partnership between husband and wife and parents and children, and balance spirituality and practical affairs, and fulfill both public and private responsibilities.
  • 5. United Nations HQ: Family BookThe Doha Institute on the Family sponsored a booklinking the MDGs to the family. UPF’s Lynn Walsh was among eight authors who contributed to this book.
  • 6. United Nations HQ: Book Launch • The book takes the view that strong, stable families are the most important resource for reaching the Millennium Development Goals. • Summaries of the book were published in all six official UN languages.
  • 8. AFGHANISTAN: Discussing qualities of a model family at a forum in Kabul
  • 9. ANGOLA: Promoting the International Day of Families on national television
  • 10. ARGENTINA: A celebration cake in Buenos Aires for couples married 20 years or more
  • 11. ARMENIA: A program for families at the State School No. 194 in Yerevan
  • 12. AUSTRIA: A presentation about demographic trends affecting families in Austria and Europe
  • 13. BANGLADESH: Addressing issues of balance in the family at a forum in Dhaka
  • 14. BELARUS: Meeting war veterans, helping them with chores, and listening to their stories
  • 15. BENIN: Government officials and diplomats addressing a forum in Cotonou
  • 16. BRAZIL: A forum at the Sao Paulo City Hall
  • 17. CAMBODIA: A family forum in Chork
  • 18. CAMEROON: Government officials addressing forums in Yaoundé and Bafoussam
  • 19. CANADA: Learning about family in Rwanda, including placing 300,000 orphans in families.
  • 20. COLOMBIA: Ambassadors for Peace share their insights about the family at a forum in Bogota.
  • 21. CONGO: Speakers at a forum in Pointe-Noire
  • 22. COTE D’IVOIRE: Honoring couples in Abidjan who have been married more than 25 years
  • 23. CZECH REPUBLIC: Panel discussions were held in Prague (pictured) and Brno
  • 24. DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO: Couples were honored at events in 3 cities.
  • 25. ECUADOR: A program in the hall of the Former Senate of the Republic
  • 26. ETHIOPIA: Addis Ababa students sing, “We are the children of today, the parents of tomorrow.”
  • 27. FINLAND: Singing traditional songs at a celebration in Helsinki
  • 28. GABON: A program at the Sylvia BONGO ONDIMBA Foundation Center in Libreville
  • 29. GEORGIA: Programs at a school and the Women’s Information Center in Tbilisi
  • 30. GERMANY: Honoring families in Stuttgart (above) and Frankfurt (below)
  • 31. GHANA: Couples receiving a Family Peace Award
  • 32. ICELAND: A multicultural parade in downtown Reykjavik
  • 33. INDIA: (Top to bottom) forums in New Delhi, Gangtok , and Lucknow
  • 34. INDONESIA: Discussion period at a seminar in Jakarta
  • 35. IRELAND: Conversations among the diverse groups at the Lantern Interfaith Centre in Dublin
  • 36. ISRAEL: Druze Sheik Ali Birani welcoming community leaders to his home in Daliat El Carmel
  • 37. JAMAICA: A program in Kingston about balancing spirituality and practical affairs in the family
  • 38. JAPAN: A forum in Tokyo addressing the challenges facing families in Japan
  • 39. KAZAKHSTAN: An interactive seminar in Almaty on “The Family as the School of Love”
  • 40. KENYA: Young performers create a family atmosphere in Nairobi.
  • 41. LITHUANIA: A program for children in Panevezys
  • 42. LUXEMBOURG: A presentation on the topic of empathy
  • 43. MALAYSIA: Games and contests for parents and children in Penang
  • 44. MALI: A workshop in Bamako on the impact of HIV/AIDS on families
  • 45. MARSHALL ISLANDS: A forum at the Marshall Islands Resort Hotel in Majuro
  • 46. MAURITIUS: Children participating in a Family Sport Day at a stadium in Reduit
  • 47. MOLDOVA: Presenting medals to outstanding families in Chisinau
  • 48. NEPAL: Giving students school supplies in four schools in Nepal
  • 49. NETHERLANDS: An intercultural program at a cathedral in The Hague
  • 50. NEW ZEALAND: An intercultural celebration at a cathedral in Auckland
  • 51. NICARAGUA: Sharing family experiences at a forum in Managua
  • 52. NIGER: Current and former government officials addressing a forum in Niamey
  • 53. NORWAY: A university forum in Oslo on the role of the family in human development
  • 54. PARAGUAY: A seminar in Asuncion on the importance of marriage
  • 55. PERU A program in the Peruvian Congress
  • 56. RUSSIA: Round-table discussions in St. Petersburg and Novosibirsk; a pageant in Moscow
  • 57. RWANDA: A song about family relationships at a forum in Kigali
  • 58. SAN MARINO: A broadcast about the importance of families (photo from National TV)
  • 59. SENEGAL Parents and students at a program at a school in Dakar
  • 60. SIERRA LEONE: Religious leaders at a forum in Freetown
  • 61. SOLOMON ISLANDS: Forum at the Rock Havens Inn Hotel in Honiara
  • 62. SOMALIA: A gathering of more than 500 Somali refugees living in Nairobi
  • 63. SOUTH KOREA: Participants in a diplomats forum in Seoul
  • 64. SPAIN: Singing Korean folk songs at a forum in Madrid on Korean culture and family traditions
  • 65. SRI LANKA: A program for 100 teachers with the Department of Education and UN Volunteers
  • 66. ST. LUCIA: A workshop in Marisule on “Better Families for Stronger Communities”
  • 67. TAIWAN: Sharing ideas in Taipei about how parents can pass on their faith to the next generation
  • 68. THAILAND: A presentation in Bangkok on “The Family as the School of Love”
  • 69. TURKEY: A symposium in Istanbul with professors from Bosphorus and Yeditepe Universities
  • 70. UKRAINE: Enjoying a snack with children at the Malyatko Childrens Home in Kiev
  • 71. UNITED KINGDOM: Discussing challenges facing families at a forum in the House of Lords
  • 72. UNITED STATES: A forum on Ensuring Work Family Balance at The Washington Times building
  • 73. VENEZUELA: Youth in Caracas speak of their hope for the future.
  • 74. ZAMBIA: Sharing experiences of work/family balance in Lusaka
  • 75. ZIMBABWE: Students and teachers at a celebration in Harare
  • 76. Universal Peace Federationwww.upf.orgFor details visithttp://upf.org/international-day-of-families-2012