A Beginners Guide to Diversity and Inclusion during the Holidays.

Hanukkah

This eight-day celebration is also known as “The Festival of Dedication” or “The Festival of Lights” in the Jewish faith. Hanukkah commemorates the miracle where sacred oil was should have lasted for only one day but went on to last fully eight days. One of the main rituals that can be observed during Hannukkah is the lighting of the candles on the Hannukkah. There are nine candles that are lit. 

Most families will celebrate with diverse games, gifts, songs and prayers. This celebration takes place between late-November and late-December depending on the Gregorian calendar.

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Kwanzaa

Kwanzaa is an African heritage focused holiday. It celebrates the people, the faith, the struggle, the self-determination, the collective responsibility, the purpose, the creativity, and faith as well as the cooperation within the African community. Each day of this week-long celebration, a candle is lit. These candles represent one of the seven principles mentioned earlier. This holiday started to be celebrated in 1966 and it is celebrated between the 26th of December and January 1st. 

As part of the celebrations, people will also decorate their homes with art and woven cloth that are usually colourful and made by the community. Another celebration is Karamu, a big feast that is being held on the 31st of December.   

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Christian Christmas

Christmas is a Christian holiday that is being held on December 25th. The celebration commemorates the birth of Jesus Christ. Typical celebrations will include various displays of lights, snowmen, Christmas trees, and multiple ornaments. A family meal is usually shared either on Christmas eve or on the 25th itself. It is also customary to exchange gifts. 

Orthodox Christmas 

This celebration falls in early January. Most of the traditions are similar to the Christian Christmas but there is also a fasting period of 40 days. After the Christmas mass, friends and family will gather to celebrate the end of the fasting with traditional dishes. Those dishes usually represent each of the apostles.

New Year Celebrations

We will mainly focus on the new year celebration that occurs within the Gregorian Calendar. They usually take place between November and February.

New Year’s Day: 

This holiday is on January 1st but it is usually celebrated on December 31st. People will gather with family and friends to countdown to midnight and celebrate the arrival of the new year. It is usually a time where people will make resolutions and changes to their life for the new year.

employee benefits, employers insurance, group health insurance, employee perks in regina, regina employee benefitsLunar New Year 

This celebration is a 15-day festival, it takes place at the end of January or mid-February. This festival is meant to bring good luck to all for the coming year. This holiday is mostly celebrated in Japan, Korea, Vietnam, and Mongolia but can be found in most countries around the globe. This celebration is mostly in honor of ancestry, luck, and good gatherings.

Tet Nguyen Dan or Tet 

This celebration is the Vietnamese Lunar New Year and it is the most important and popular holiday in Vietnam. Of course, you can celebrate it from anywhere and you can people that celebrate it all around the world. It is celebrated in late January or early February. One of the most important things about this holiday is that it will “determine your fate” for the rest of the year.

Diversity during the Holidays

It is important to realize that not everyone in the workplace or in your friend’s circle has the same traditions as you. We shared a shortlist that does not include all the different traditions and holidays but we think it’s important to be curious and respectful of others. We hope that you have a great time during the holidays and that everyone feels safe and respected either at home or in the workplace.