The International Day of Sports for Development and Peace, April 2021 (RECAP)

One of the biggest keys to fashion isn’t just what you wear, it’s the body wearing it. There’s no rule that says competition can’t be fabulous. Sports and fashion run together closer than most people think. That’s why it’s important to be aware of the International Day of Sports, sponsored by the United Nations itself.

The International Day of Sports for Development and Peace highlights the importance of sports, of amicable competition and the role that sports plays especially in the younger generations. Activity promotes good health, and that’s the most important thing in the world right now.

Last year, many events were postponed or cancelled. Normal activities outdoors or in gyms were shuttered to keep in line with the regulations that kept people safe from the spread of the pandemic.

This year, the focus for the International Day of Sports remains on the pandemic, but is much more hopeful than before. Events were still organized and held by local communities to safely gather and participate in sports with all the precautious in place. It’s a short fix to the long problem, but the real hope lies in the solution yet to come.

One year out, vaccines are finally starting to roll out and immunizations are on the rise. People are looking forward to a time when they can get back to the sports they love with the friends they’ve missed.

Using the hashtag #OnlyTogether, the UN called for social media action to promote the cause along with the hashtag #SportsDay. This allowed organizations to participate in their own way, promoting the ideals of Sports Day while also making a stand for the unification called for under Only Together. Sports Day represented the ideal recovery of the fundamentals of sports lifted from the pandemic, while Only Together promoted the unity and inclusiveness that communities would need in order to get through the coming year.

The ideals of Sports were highlighted to play a role in how we can all come together to build back better. The aspects of teamwork and equity on the playing field, to make everyone important and equal, were brought up. The goal was to give people an objective reminder of how we can recover from the pandemic and resume the sports we all dearly miss. It also gave a reminder on the importance of sports and the role they play in everyone’s lives as the lessons sports teach can carry into all aspects of life.

The social media campaign was successful. People shared pictures and videos of why they valued sports while endorsing the importance of vaccinations to help finally stop the spread. The response showed how much people missed sports in their daily lives. It set up a goal that everyone can reach for together: to give access to the vaccine to as many people as possible, because no one should have to miss out on what they love.

The UN Assembly clarifies the purpose of this event: “The International Day of Sport for Development and Peace 2021 there is an opportunity to recognize the role that sport plays in communities, in individuals’ lives, in building resilience and in the recovery from the pandemic through online and social media activity in the lead up to and on the Day.”

Everyone is ready to play and cheer again. That’s what Sports Day is all about.

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