January 18-25: The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, during which Christians pray for unity between all churches of the Christian faith. February is Black History Month in the United States and Canada. It marks the all-important wheat harvest in Israel and commemorates the anniversary of the day when God gave the Torah to the nation of Israel assembled at Mount Sinai. In Israel, the flowering of the almond tree usually coincides with this holiday, which is observed by planting trees and eating dried fruits and nuts. April 8: Lailat al Bara’a, also known as Barat, or Night of Forgiveness, an Islamic holiday during which practitioners of the faith seek forgiveness for sins. January 1: New Year’s Day, the first day of the year according to the modern Gregorian calendar, celebrated within most Western countries. Intercalary days are observed with gift giving, special acts of charity, and preparation for the fasting that precedes the New Year. It was started in 2004 to recognize and honor the diversity surrounding us all. On this day Hindus worship Saraswati Devi, the goddess of wisdom, knowledge, music, art, and culture. August 19: Hijri New Year, the day that marks the beginning of the new Islamic calendar year. As you consider your holiday celebration plans for the workplace, there are other crucial steps you should take to ensure you’re fostering diversity and inclusion. February 3: St. Blaise Day (The Blessing of the Throats), the feast day of St. Blaise of Sebaste celebrated by the Roman Catholic Church and some Eastern Catholic churches. Celebrated on Louis Braille’s birthday, the inventor of braille. February 8 is an alternative date of observance. December 16-24: Las Posadas, a nine-day celebration in Mexico commemorating the trials Mary and Joseph endured during their journey to Bethlehem. Femina Ajayi-Hackworth. Shi’a Muslims celebrate it five days later than Sunni Muslims. February 3: Four Chaplains Sunday commemorates the 55th anniversary of the sinking of the United States army transport Dorchester and the heroism of the four chaplains aboard. April 5: Palm Sunday, a Christian holiday commemorating the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem. A multicultural calendar with monthly themes and events is an essential tool for diversity in the workplace training. February 29 (sunset) to March 19 (sunset): Nineteen-Day Fast, a time in the Bahá’í Faith to reinvigorate the soul and bring one closer to God. Following a tumultuous 2020 (2020 Diversity Calendar here) , the 2021 multicultural and diversity calendar has increased significance for understanding and celebrating diversity in the United States. Being aware of ethnic holidays is key for respectful scheduling and creating inclusion, 365 days a year. April 6: Mahavir Jayanti, a holiday celebrated by the Jains commemorating the birth of Lord Mahavir. February 21: Maha Shivarati, Hindu festival celebrated each year to honor Lord Shiva. If there are other holidays and/or observances you would like to see represented in future calendars, please contact the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at 844-JHD-VRSTY (844-543-8778) or Diversity@jhmi.edu. March 20: Ostara, a celebration of the spring equinox commemorated by Pagans and Wiccans. November 20: Transgender Day of Remembrance, established in 1998 to memorialize those who have been killed as a result of transphobia and to raise awareness of the continued violence endured by the transgender community. The annual event is designed to raise awareness of global population issues. May 21: Ascension of Jesus, celebrated as the ascension of Christ from Earth in the presence of God within most of the Christian faith. This observance was launched in 1945 when Congress declared the first week in October as “National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week.” In 1998, the week was extended to a month and renamed. Though named for its former religious significance, it is chiefly marked by feasting and celebration, which traditionally preceded the observance of the Lenten fast. The holiday on June 19 honors the day when enslaved people in Texas learned that the Civil War was over, and they were free. April 21: Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Day of Remembrance. January 2: Bodhi Day, the Buddhist holiday that commemorates the day that the historical Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama (Shakyamuni), experienced enlightenment, also known as bodhi in Sanskrit and Pali. April 2: Ram Navami, a Hindu day of worship and celebration of the seventh avatar of Vishnu (Lord Rama). November 27: Native American Heritage Day, held annually the Friday after Thanksgiving, encourages Americans of all backgrounds to observe and honor Native Americans through appropriate ceremonies and activities. For the full digital 2020 Diversity Calendar, click here. Celebrations include praying and fasting. First observed in 1911 in Germany, it has now become a major global celebration honoring women’s economic, political and social achievements. June 15: St. Vladimir Day, a Roman Catholic feast celebrating St. Vladimir. May 1: Beltane, an ancient Celtic festival celebrated on May Day, signifying the beginning of summer. August 26: Women’s Equality Day, which commemorates the August 26, 1920, certification of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution that gave women the right to vote. It is a commemoration of the death anniversary of the prophet Zoroaster, or Zarathushtra. June 14: All Saints’ Day, celebrated by many Eastern Christian churches on this day in June, in recognition of all known and unknown saints. March 9-10: Purim, a Jewish celebration that marks the time when the Jewish community living in Persia was saved from genocide. Office of the Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion 2680 Beardshear Hall Ames, Iowa 50011-2103. vpdioffice@iastate.edu 515-294-8840 phone. During this celebration, homes and mosques are decorated, large parades take place, and those observing the holiday participate in charity events. The month of May was chosen to commemorate the immigration of the first Japanese to the United States on May 7, 1843, and to mark the anniversary of the completion of the transcontinental railroad on May 10, 1869. It is also known as the Great Night of Shiva or Shivaratri and is one of the largest and most significant among the sacred festival nights of India. Moses Balian. November 1: All Saints’ Day, a Christian holiday commemorating all known and unknown Christian saints. ISU Consumer Information Disclosures April 24: Armenian Martyrs’ Day recognizes the genocide of approximately 1.5 million Armenians between 1915 and 1923 in Turkey. October 28: Milvian Bridge Day, a one-day festival in Fayetteville, West Virginia. When you’re thinking about Equality and Diversity, you have to realise it’s more than just religion. Easy Awareness & Inclusion: 365, 2/11 – LGBTQ+: Tammy Baldwin – Birthday of first openly LGBT politician elected to the U.S. Congress, and first elected to U.S. Senate, 2/15 – Buddhist: Parinirvana or Nirvana Day – commemorates Buddha’s death in 483 BC and his final nirvana – for more religious holidays, see our 2020 Interfaith Calendar, 2/15 – Women: Susan B. Anthony – Birthday of leader of women’s rights and the effort to enable women to vote, 2/21 – Black: Barbara Jordan – Birthday of first Black woman elected to the Texas State Senate, 2/26 – Christian: Ash Wednesday – the start of Lent, prayer and fasting for 40 days until Easter Sunday, Women’s History Month – celebrates the achievements of women, March 1 – Hispanic American/Women: Geisha Williams – Birthday of first female Hispanic CEO of a Fortune 500 company, 3/ 6  – Black American/Muslim: Shaquille O’Neal – Birthday of considered one of the greatest NBA players of all time, and a practicing Muslim, 3/9 – Hindu: Holi – honors the winter crop harvest, and advent of spring, 3/10 – Black American: Harriet Tubman – abolitionist leader on the Underground Railroad, aided slaves in their journey to freedom, 3/14 – Jewish German American: Albert Einstein -Birthday of leading theoretical physicist of the 20th century, 3/17 – Irish: St Patrick’s Day – Birthday of celebrates the patron saint of Ireland, who brought Christianity to island, 3/31 – Mexican American: Cesar Chavez – Birthday of social activist for Mexicans and Mexican Americans, fighting for equality and economic justice, 4/4 – Black American: Maya Angelou – Birthday of writer, poet and renaissance woman, winner of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, 4/8 – Buddhist: Buddha’s Birth – prince turned monk, who established Buddhism, one of the world’s top religions, 4/9 – Jewish: Passover begins – marks the liberation of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt, begins previous evening with a Seder or meal, 4/12 – Christian: Easter – one of the most important holiday days in the world’s largest religion, celebrates the resurrection of Jesus, 4/21 – Jewish: Yom Hashoah or Holocaust Remembrance Day, 4/21 – Cancer Survivor: David Servan Schreiber – Birthday of given six months to live, he survived cancer for 15 years, as documented in books such as Anticancer: A New Way of Life, 4/24 – Islamic: Ramadan – first day of Ramadan, holiest month of the Muslim year; during this month, no water or food may be taken from sunrise to sunset, 4/23 – Native American: Gathering of Nations – over 500 tribes gather for three days to honor the culture of Native Americans, For more details, see our April 2020 Diversity Calendar, Mental Health Awareness Month – reaches millions of people in the United States through the media, local events, and screenings, Jewish American Heritage Month – honors the important history of American Jews, and their multifaceted accomplishments, Older Americans Month – honors the contributions of older Americans to society, 5/4 – LGBT: Keith Haring – Birthday of artist, created iconic images for AIDS awareness, 5/5 – Mexican American: Cinco de Mayo – Birthday of celebrated mostly by Mexican-Americans, honors the Mexican defeat of French army, 5/13 – Black American/People With Disabilities : Stevie Wonder – Birthday of one of the most acclaimed and successful musicians of the 20th century, blind since shortly after birth, To discover more, see our May 2020 Diversity Calendar, 6/1 – LDS Church: Brigham Young – Birthday of 2nd president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, 6/2 – Native Americans: Indian Citizenship Act of 1924, 6/14 – Puerto Rican: Puerto Rican Day Parade – parades are held nationwide to honor the contributions and achievements of Puerto Ricans, 6/19 – Black American: Juneteenth – marks the freeing of slaves in Texas, and celebrated by Black communities nationwide, 6/25 – Hispanic American: Sonia Sotomayor – Birthday of Supreme Court’s first justice of Hispanic descent, 6/27 – People With Disabilities: Helen Keller – Birthday of blind and deaf, Keller spent her life advocating for people with disabilities, For more information, see our June 2020 Diversity Calendar, 7/6 – Tibetan: 14th Dalai Lama – Birthday of exiled head of Tibet, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, 7/6  – Women, Mexican: Frida Kahlo – Birthday of painter, one of the best-known artists of the 20th century, 7/14 – France: Bastille Day – commemorates the start of the French Revolution in 1789 and the eventual end of monarchical rule, 7/14 – Hispanic American: Susan Martinez – Birthday of first Latina governor in the United States, and first woman to be elected governor of New Mexico, 7/18 – South African: Nelson Mandela – Birthday of anti-apartheid activist and first black president of South Africa, 7/26 – Americans with Disabilities Act – prohibits discrimination based on disabilities, 7/28 – Islamic: The Hajj – annual pilgrimage to the Saudi holy city of Mecca, able Muslims must make the journey at least once in their lives, For more details, enjoy our July 2020 Diversity Calendar, 8/4 – Black American: Barack Obama – first Black American to assume the presidency, promoted inclusiveness for LGBT Americans, left office in January 2017 with a 60% approval rating, 8/8 – Mexican: Emiliano Zapata – Birthday of revolutionary hero, who fostered democracy and economic justice, 8/15 – Roman Catholic: Feast of the Assumption – honors the Roman Catholics belief in Mary’s ascension to heaven, 8/20- Islamic: Al-Hijri (New Year) – starting the previous evening, this begins the new year 1440 based on the Islamic lunar calendar, 8/22 – Hindu: Ganesh Chaturthi – celebrated in honor of the elephant-headed God, 8/24 – People with Disabilities: Marlee Matlin – Birthday of won the Academy Award for Best Actress, the only deaf performer to win the award, 8/25 – Jewish American: Leonard Bernstein – Birthday of composer, conductor and performer, one of the great figures of music in the 20th century, Discover more with our August 2020 Diversity Calendar, National Hispanic Heritage Month (9-15 to 10/15), 9/5 – Native American (Oglala Sioux): Tashunka Witko (Crazy Horse), 9/19- Jewish: Rosh Hashanah – beginning at sunset the previous day, this launches the Jewish New Year 5780, and reflection about the past year and year to come, 9/25 – People With Disabilities: Christopher Reeve – Birthday of actor turn advocate, paralyzed by fall from a horse, he prompted research on spinal cord injuries, Find out more with our September 2020 Diversity Calendar, Global Diversity Awareness Month  – increase awareness and acceptance of diverse cultures, National Disability Employment Awareness Month – promotes awareness of those with disabilities and inspire their full integration into the workplace, 10/2 – India : Mahatma Gandhi’s Birthday (Gandhi Jayanti) – Birthday of honors the leader of the Indian struggle for independence, 10/6 – United States: German American Heritage Day, 10/6 – Black American: Fannie Lou Hamer – Birthday of civil rights advocate, and one of the first Black Americans to register to vote, 10/29 – Islamic : Mawlid (Prophet Muhammad’s Birthday), Discover more with our October 2020 Diversity Calendar, 11/1 – LGBTQ+: Tim Cook – Birthday of first openly gay CEO of a Fortune 500 company, 10/31-11/2 – Mexico: Day of the Dead (Día de los Muertos) – rooted in two traditions: the Christian observance of All Saints and All Souls Day, and two Aztec festivals of souls of the dead, 11/14 – Hindu: Diwali – one of the most important Hindu festivals, celebrating different gods and goddesses; discover more major religious holidays in 2020, 11/18 – Hispanic American: Roberto Goizueta – Birthday of first Hispanic Fortune 500, 11/20 – LGBTQ+: Transgender Day of Remembrance – build respect in your workplace with our Online Harassment Prevention Training, 11/30 – Black: Shirley Chisholm – Birthday of first Black woman to win election to the United States Congress, Find out more with our November 2020 Diversity Calendar, 12/10-18 – Jewish: Hanukkah – commemorates the Jewish victory over Syrian Greeks in 165 B.C.E., restoring Jewish independence, 12/12 – Italian American: Frank Sinatra (1915-1998) – (birthday of) first worldwide pop superstar, with a career lasting more than half a century, 12/12 – Mexico: Fiesta de Guadalupe Feast – Mexico’s patron saint, 12/21 – Pagan and Wiccan: Yule – begins at sundown, 12/25 – Christian: Christmas – marks the birth of the savior Jesus Christ, 12/26 – Black: Kwanzaa (12/26-1/1) – a tribute to African festivals of harvest.
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