By Charles Fowler
It’s almost time for World Values Day again. This annual campaign has grown massively since the first one was launched in 2016 supported by a few hundred individuals and organisations around the world who were united in their passion for values.
Last year the campaign reached over 60 million people in over 100 countries. It seems that World Values Day was launched just as the world suddenly began to realise how crucial values are to all of us in our lives. On every continent, in almost every country, in so many areas, our values appear to be under assault and suddenly we are all feeling vulnerable.
Values are our motivators, our drivers. They are there to guide what we do and how we do it. When the world starts forgetting its values, we are all in danger.
The purpose of World Values Day is simple: to raise awareness of the importance of our values in our lives, and to encourage us to put those values into action. In today’s uncertain and often alarming world, this is something that really resonates.
The main theme this year is about values in the community, and how with even one small action we can begin to make a difference. It’s a call for us to get engaged.
It’s easy for everyone to get engaged in World Values Day and make a difference in their own communities – either by themselves or with families, friends or colleagues – in just four simple steps:
- Choose a community – it might be where you live, study or work, or a community based on faith, sport or other common interest. Or a virtual community.
- Choose a value that’s really important for that community.
- Take an action to put that value into practice in a way that makes a positive impact on the community (keep it as simple and practical as you can; involve others as much as possible).
- Share it. Take a selfie using the “WE VALUE…” template and share on social media using the hashtag #WorldValuesDay. Add a fun photo, video, gif or boomerang to your post!
You can find plenty of tips and ideas if you would like some inspiration on what to do on the World Values Day website, with activities ranging from big conferences and organised events to ideas for individual acts of kindness and humanity. Community groups or organisations might like use a resource pack on how to hold a Community Dialogue, or they could find out about the Values Challenge, a one hour values refresher course. Or try a community walk, or just random acts of kindness.
There is something that everyone can do on World Values Day to bring their own most important value to life and begin to change the world.
“If you don’t like the way the world is, you change it. You have an obligation to change it. You just do it one step at a time.” – Marian Wright Edelman
Let’s make a start together.
Charles Fowler is part of the UK Values Alliance steering group and was involved with other members of the Alliance in launching the first World Values Day in 2016 and co-ordinating it since then. He is also Chair of the Human Values Foundation, which helps children and young people discover and practise their values.