The Lincolnia Senior Center recently hosted an inaugural International Friendship Day program. The program was the brainchild of Danilo “Danny” Lunaria and his wife Milagros “Mila.” Seeking ideas for a summer event at the center, the Lunarias were inspired by the International Day of Friendship. First proclaimed by the U.N. in 2011, this annual event was created with the goal of uniting people from diverse cultures in friendship in order to inspire peace and build bridges between communities.
With the help of Lincolnia Center staff, Danny and Mila sought to recruit members of the community to participate in the program. People were invited to share their cultural heritage in a variety of ways including presenting highlights of their history, performing a traditional song or dance, creating displays using significant objects from their countries of origin or wearing traditional dress. Danny admits that convincing people to perform was challenging but feels confident that they will be eager to sign up next year having witnessed the success of this year’s program.