The UN Peace Bell will ring on the International Day of Peace

Shown here is UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon ringing the UN Peace Bell to mark the annual International Day of Peace which is observed around the world on September 21. The UN General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, both among all ations and peoples. Pictured with Ban Ki-moon are the peace-loving Tarumi Violinists, under the direction of Yukako Tarumi, who will perform at this year’s International Day of Peace celebration at UN Headquarters. UN Photo/Paulo Figueiras
Shown here is UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon ringing the UN Peace Bell to mark the annual International Day of Peace which is observed around the world on September 21. The UN General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, both among all ations and peoples. Pictured with Ban Ki-moon are the peace-loving Tarumi Violinists, under the direction of Yukako Tarumi, who will perform at this year’s International Day of Peace celebration at UN Headquarters. UN Photo/Paulo Figueiras

 

This year ‘s ceremony on the International Day of Peace will be held at United Nations Headquarters in New York City on September 16 from 9:00 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.

The UN Secretary-General will celebrate the Day in the Peace Garden at United Nations Headquarters by ringing the Peace Bell and observing a Minute of Silence.

According to the United Nations, “Women Nobel Peace Prize laureates and the United Nations Messengers of Peace” will be invited to participate in the ceremony.”

 

What does it mean to be a “Messenger of Peace” or “Goodwill Ambassador” at UN Headquarters?

Being named a “Messenger of Peace” or “Goodwill Ambassador “is a great honor. However, as the UN points out, “it is the Secretary-General who appoints UN “Messengers of Peace”, whereas Goodwill Ambassadors are appointed by the heads of United Nations Programmes and specialized agencies such as UNICEF and many others.

For example, UNESCO “Artists for Peace” have been described as “internationally renowned personalities who use their influence, charisma, and prestige to help promote UNESCO’s Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization.”

 

Pictured at the UN Peace Bell is the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, together with his wife Yoo Soon-taek. The Secretary-General rang the UN Peace Bell at a special ceremony to mark the return of the Peace Bell from the Rose Garden to its original location in the Japanese Peace Garden during the UN renovation under the Capital Master Plan in May 2015. UN Photo/Mark Garten.
Pictured at the UN Peace Bell is the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, together with his wife Yoo Soon-taek. The Secretary-General rang the UN Peace Bell at a special ceremony to mark the return of the Peace Bell from the Rose Garden to its original location in the Japanese Peace Garden during the UN renovation under the Capital Master Plan in May 2015. UN Photo/Mark Garten.

On the other hand, UN “Messengers of Peace”, according to the United Nations, “is backed by the highest honor bestowed by the Secretary-General on a global citizen, and these prominent personalities volunteer their time, talent, and passion to raise awareness of United Nations efforts to improve the lives of billions of people everywhere.”

UN “Messengers of Peace” include Michael Douglas, Jane Goodall, and Leonardo Di Caprio, among others.

This year on the International Day of Peace UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will be ringing the UN Peace Bell for the very last time. His term as UN Secretary-General for the last ten years will end in December 2016, and a new UN Secretary-General will assume the role of UN Secretary-General starting in January 2017. Among Ban Ki-moon’s many accomplishments will be the success of “The Sustainable Development Goals: Building Blocks for Peace.” UN Photo/Mark Garten.
This year on the International Day of Peace UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will be ringing the UN Peace Bell for the very last time. His term as UN Secretary-General for the last ten years will end in December 2016, and a new UN Secretary-General will assume the role of UN Secretary-General starting in January 2017. Among Ban Ki-moon’s many accomplishments will be the success of “The Sustainable Development Goals: Building Blocks for Peace.” UN Photo/Mark Garten.

This year’s theme at the UN is “The Sustainable Development Goals: Building Blocks for Peace.” The 17 Sustainable Development Goals were unanimously adopted by the 193 Member States of the United Nations at a historic summit of the world’s leaders in New York in September 2015.
The new ambitious 2030 agenda calls on countries to begin efforts to achieve these goals over the next 5 years. It aims to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all.

“The 17 Sustainable Development Goals are our shared vision of humanity and a social contract between the world’s leaders and the people” said UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

“They are a to-do list for people and planet, and a blueprint for success.”

The United Nations Education Outreach Section will hold a global student video conference on the same day, from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. also at United Nations Headquarters.

Check out videos by youth around the world on how the Goals can help build peace.

There’s also a hip hop music video young people will enjoy called Sustainable Development Goals: Improve Life All Around The Globe” produced by Flocabulary

This video was produced in partnership with the Education Outreach Section of the Outreach Division of the United Nations Department of Public Information.

The Tarumi Violinists, who have been performing on the International Day of Peace for 20 years at UN Headquarters, have been encouraged to become “global citizens”. It starts by promoting respect and responsibility across cultures at a young age, and through Global Citizenship Education, a UN initiative, children will learn how to live together in a positive way.

In addition, these violin playing children are raising global awareness on the work of the United Nations through the joy of music. In addition, the Tarumi Violin Children’s Foundation supports the UN’s “Culture of Peace.” On non-violence. As the UN puts it, “everything that is needed to build a Culture of Peace already exists in each one of us.” As stated in the United Nations definition, a “Culture of Peace” is a set of values, attitudes, modes of behavior and ways of life that reject violence and prevent conflicts by tackling their root causes to solve problems through dialogue and negotiation among individuals, groups, and nations.”

Ann Charles
Ann Charles is UN Bureau Chief of "Baltic Review" based in New York City. She covers diplomatic activities at United Nations Headquarters in New York and the world body's work in human rights, education, culture, the environment, and tourism, among other global concerns.