In 1999, actor turned filmmaker Jeremy Gilley set out to document his efforts to create an annual Peace Day. To this end he founded the non-profit organisation Peace One Day. In 2001 the organisation’s efforts were rewarded when the member states of the United Nations unanimously adopted the first ever annual day of global ceasefire and non-violence on 21 September – Peace Day.
Since 2001, Peace One Day’s objective has been to institutionalise Peace Day 21 September, making it a day that is self-sustaining, an annual day of global unity, a day of intercultural cooperation on an unprecedented scale.
To support this objective, and inspired by pivotal success in Afghanistan (where a 70% reduction in violent incidents was recorded by United Nations Department of Safety and Security on Peace Day 2008), Jeremy launched a series of Peace One Day coalitions, each with a lead partner: the NGO Coalition; the ‘Reducing Domestic Abuse’ Coalition; the Student Coalition; the Faith Coalition; the Corporate Coalition; and the Schools’ Network.
In 2014 Peace One Day launched a 3-year project in the Great Lakes region of Africa. The goal was to raise awareness of Peace Day and encourage all sectors of society in the region to stand together in the name of peace on 21 September.
In 2016, after several years work with global management consulting firm McKinsey & Company, it was estimated that 2.2 billion people had been exposed to the Peace Day message, that 940 million were aware of the day and that 16 million behaved more peacefully as a result. See more on the impact of Peace Day here.
Through initiatives and collaborations, Peace One Day continues to encourage organisations and individuals to reduce violence at home, in the workplace, at school, in our communities and towards our environment.
Plans are underway for Peace One Day’s 20th anniversary celebration on Saturday 21 September 2019. Peace One Day’s goal for 2025 is to reach 3 billion people with the message of Peace Day.
Peace One Day is impartial and independent of any government, political persuasion, corporation or religious creed.