Harmony Day is a special day celebrated in Australia on the 21st of March every year. This day is all about celebrating the diversity and inclusiveness of the Australian society. It is a day to promote respect, unity and belonging amongst all Australians, regardless of their cultural or ethnic background. In this blog post, we will take a closer look at Harmony Day and why it is important.
History of Harmony Day
Harmony Day was first celebrated in 1999 by the Department of Immigration and Multicultural Affairs. It was initially called 'Harmony Day: Everyone Belongs'. The aim of the day was to promote a sense of community and belonging amongst Australians, especially those from diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds.
In 2003, the Australian government declared March 21st as the official Harmony Day. This date was chosen because it coincides with the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. Since then, Harmony Day has become an important annual event in Australia, celebrated by individuals, schools, and communities across the country.
Why is Harmony Day important?
Harmony Day is important for a number of reasons. Firstly, it is a celebration of Australia's cultural diversity. Australia is a country made up of people from all over the world, with a rich history of immigration. Harmony Day recognises and celebrates this diversity, and promotes understanding and acceptance of different cultures.
Secondly, Harmony Day is important because it promotes social inclusion and belonging. Many people from diverse backgrounds may feel isolated or excluded from mainstream society. Harmony Day aims to create a sense of community and belonging, where everyone feels valued and respected.
Finally, Harmony Day is important because it promotes a sense of national identity. Australia is a multicultural country, and it is important that all Australians feel like they belong and have a shared identity. Harmony Day helps to promote this shared identity, while also celebrating the diversity that makes Australia unique.
How is Harmony Day celebrated?
Harmony Day is celebrated in a variety of ways across Australia. Schools, community groups and workplaces often hold events and activities to mark the occasion. Some of the ways Harmony Day is celebrated include:
- Cultural performances and displays: Schools and community groups may hold performances and displays showcasing different cultural traditions, such as dance, music, and art.
- Shared meals: Many communities hold shared meals where people can come together and share food from different cultures.
- Cultural dress: People may dress up in traditional clothing from their cultural background, or wear orange clothing, which is the official colour of Harmony Day.
- Cultural workshops: Workshops may be held to teach people about different cultures, traditions and languages.
- Community events: Many communities hold events such as street festivals, picnics or concerts to celebrate Harmony Day.
Harmony Day is an important day in Australia, celebrating the country's cultural diversity and promoting social inclusion and belonging. It is a day for all Australians to come together, celebrate their differences, and promote a sense of community and shared identity. By celebrating Harmony Day, we can help to create a more inclusive and harmonious society for all.