Cultural Holiday Celebration Month


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For the month of December Staff Management | SMX's Diversity Program Inclusion Council (DPIC) is recognizing all of the national cultural holidays that we celebrate in the month of December. This issue of the DPIC newsletter will highlight other December Holidays that you may not be too familiar with, and this is a more than appropriate platform to use to familiarize yourself with how others celebrate the holiday.

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Cultural Holiday Celebration Month

  1. 1. Great Movies to Watch! Winter Holiday Word Search!With celebrating the Cultural Holiday Celebrations Find the following words in the search below.!during the month, check out some movies thatfeature great action packed thrilling stories.! BLIZZARD! ICEPALACE! SLEIGHBELLS! BOBSLEDS! ICERINK! SKATING! White Christmas! BOOTS! ICICLES! SNOWBALLS! Directors: Michael Curtiz Stars: Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye and CARNIVALS! JACKFROST! SNOWBOARDS! Rosemary Clooney! Synopsis: A successful song-and-dance FIREPLACES! MITTENS! SNOWMEN! team get romantically involved with a sister act & team up to save the Vermont FLAKES! OVERCOATS! SNOWMOBILES! inn of their former commanding general.! HATS! SCARVES! TOBOGGANS! ! A Christmas Story! HOCKEY! SKIING! TUQUES! Directors: Bob Clark! Stars: Peter Billingsley, Melinda Dillon HOLIDAYS! SLEDS! and Darren McGavin! Synopsis: Ralphie has to convince his parents, teachers, and Santa that a Red Ryder BB gun really is the perfect gift for Creating Diversity Awareness in the Workplace the 1940s.! ! December 2011 Newsletter The Three Caballeros! Directors: Norman Ferguson & 4 others! Stars: Aurora Miranda, Carmen Molina and Dora Luz! Synopsis: Donald receives his birthday gifts, which include traditional gifts and information about Brazil (hosted by Zé Carioca) and Mexico (by Panchito, a Mexican Charro Rooster).! ! Black Candle! Directors: M.K. Asante Jr.! Stars: Maya Angelou, Molefi Kete Asante and Jim Brown! Synopsis: A landmark film that uses Cultural Holiday Celebration Month Kwanzaa as a vehicle to celebrate the African-American experience. Narrated by world renown poet Maya Angelou.! Recognizing Winter Holidays Around the World ! Thereʼs No Such Thing As a Generally, when you think of the month of December, you Chanukah Bush! immediately think of the good that comes along within those Directors: A. Paige Goldberg! 31 glorious days. Sure the month of December holds a good Stars: Kira Spencer Hesser! Synopsis: Robin, a young girl who deal of stress as well (End of the year projects, heavy traffic, wants a tree so badly that she dreams of airport congestion, shopping stores with wall to wall crowds decorated trees beckoning to her. and running the gauntlet in the grocery stores). But what Despite her mothers explanation that makes all of those headaches worth it, is what everyone is people are Jewish in different ways, which is why Sandy Goldstein can have striving for, and that is hope and happiness of creating new a Christmas tree and they cannot, Robin memories with our family, friends and loved ones. What still desires one of her own.! makes December more unique from any other month is that ! this month is a constant embracement of holiday joy from all Boxing Day! different cultures and corners of the world. ! Directors: Francis Abbey! Stars: Ariana Almajan, Bridget Devlin ! Burke and Danny Gavigan! This month, The DPIC is proud to honor and recognize Synopsis: Emmy brings her boyfriend, these holiday cultural events, which we at Staff Darryl, home to meet her family. Darryl Management | SMX celebrate. This month we will highlight has to survive her know-it-all mother, clueless father, deviant sister& miscreant Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Los Pasados and Boxing brother. ! Day. The twinkle that I think is worth mentioning for the month of December is that even the holidays that we do not traditionally celebrate, we all still pay a small, lovingThe Staff Management | SMX DPIC includes: Kenyatta Draper, Lupe acknowledgement when we say to each other “HappyGonzalez, Katie Smith, Jenny Reints, Pat Lach, Avery Yancey, Dayna Holidays”. So, in a slight discrete way, we are all celebrating Happy Holidays from 
Corona, Jessica Lewis, Justin Schwartz, Robert Cook, Maurice Proffit,Jennifer Fielding and Lloyd Weathers! the world, and thatʼs what itʼs all about. ! Staff Management | SMX!! NOVEMBER 2011 NEWSLETTER DIVERSITY PROGRAM INCLUSION COUNCIL CREATING DIVERSITY AWARENESS IN THE WORKPLACE NEWSLETTER NOVEMBER 2011
  2. 2. Christmas! Hanukkah! 
 Christmas Day is a holiday generally observed on December Hanukkah (Hebrew word for dedication) begins on 25 to commemorate the birth of Jesus, the central figure of the 25th day of Kislev in the Hebrew calendar. It Christianity. Although nominally a Christian holiday, Christmas lasts for eight days beginning at sunset the is celebrated by an increasing number of non-Christians previous day and is also known as the Festival of worldwide and many of its popular celebratory customs have Lights. Hanukkah celebrates the victory (165 BCE) pre-Christian or secular themes and origins. Popular modern of the Maccabees over the Syrian tyrant Antiochus customs of the holiday include gift-giving, music, an exchange IV and the subsequent reclamation of Jerusalem. of Christmas cards, church celebrations, a special meal, and According to the Talmud, only a one day supply of the display of various decorations; including Christmas trees, nondesecrated oil was found in the Temple when lights, garlands, mistletoe, nativity scenes, and holly. In the Maccabees prepared it for rededication by addition, several figures, known as Saint Nicholas, Father removing all Syrian idols. Miraculously, the oil Christmas, and Santa Claus, among other names, are lasted for eight days until oil that was fit for use in associated with bringing gifts to children during the Christmas the temple could be obtained. This miracle is season. ! commemorated by the lighting of the Hanukkah ! candles. The candles are placed on the menorah or hanukkiya, a nine-branch candelabrum. The Christmas Fun Facts! ninth branch of the hanukkiya holds the shamash, •  In order for Santa to visit every house on Christmas, he or servant light. This branch is lit first and is used must visit 842,000,000 homes and must travel 4,796,250 to light a new candle on successive nights. The mph to visit each home. ! Kwanzaa! candle lighting is accompanied by the chanting of •  If you were to receive a present for each gift in “The 12 Days 
 blessings.! of Christmas”, you would receive 364 presents and on Kwanzaa is an African-American cultural festival ! average (according to PNC Financial Services) those gifts beginning on December 26 and ending on January 1. would cost $18,348.87. ! The festival was created in 1966 by Dr. Maulana Ron Hanukkah Fun Facts! •  Over 4,000,000 tons of trash is generated annually from the Karenga. Dr. Karengas goal was to establish a holiday •  There are 17 correct ways to spell Hanukkah: gift wrap and shopping bags.! that would facilitate African-American goals of building a Chanuccah, Channuka, Channukah, Chanuka, strong family, learning about African-American history, Chanukkah, Chanuko, Hannuka, Hannukah, and developing unity. Karenga identified seven Hanuka, Hanukkah, Hanukka, Hannukka, principles, the Nguzo Saba, of the African-American Kanukkah, Khannuka, Khannukah, Khanukkah, Las Posadas! culture and incorporated them into Kwanzaa. The Khanukkah.! 
 principles are Umoja (unity), Kujichagulia (self- •  For most of history, Hanukkah was a minor Las Posadas, (Spanish for "the inn") is a traditional Mexican determination), Ujima (collective work and holiday. It gained popularity in the late 1800s, festival which re-enacts Josephs search for room at the inn. responsibility), Ujamaa (cooperative economics), Nia eventually becoming one of the most Each Christmas season, a processional carrying a doll (purpose), Kuumba (creativity), and Imani (faith).! celebrated Jewish holidays in the calendar.! representing the Christ Child and images of Joseph and Mary ! riding a burro walks through the community streets. The Kwanza Fun Facts! processional stops at a previously selected home and asks for •  The colors of the candle in the menorah represents: lodging for the night. The people are invited in to read Green = “The Future and hope for new life”, Black = scriptures and sing Christmas carols called villancicos. “Unity and face of the people of Africa” and Red = Refreshments are provided by the hosts.! “The blood of the ancestors”! ! •  Those lighting candles for Kwanzaa contributed to Las Posadas Fun Facts! the $1.3 billion worth of candles shipped in this •  It is said that Marco Polo brought with him the idea of country in 2002.! piñatas: vessels adorned with color paper, that in China, •  Kwanzaa is Swahili and means "first fruits."! were broken by hitting them with sticks to commemorate Springtime.! •  The most well-know Posadas celebration in the United States is held in Los Angles on Olvera Street.! Boxing Day! •  Las Posadas were born when Spanish Catholic missionaries 
 asked Rome to give a special permission to celebrate nine The tradition has long included giving money and other gifts to those who were needy “Christmas Masses” to represent the nine months of Maryʼs and in service positions. The European tradition has been dated to the Middle Ages, pregnancy along with teachings about Jesusʼ birth.! but the exact origin is unknown and there are some claims that it goes back to the late •  Breaking the Piñata symbolizes abundance for the whole Roman/early Christian era; metal boxes placed outside churches were used to collect year; may it bring happiness, food, and well being to those special offerings tied to the Feast of Saint Stephen. In some Canadian provinces, around us.! Boxing Day is a statutory holiday that is always celebrated on 26 December. In Canadian provinces where Boxing Day is a statutory holiday, and it falls on a Saturday or Sunday, compensation days are given in the following week. !DECEMBERNOVEMBER 2011 NEWSLETTER DIVERSITY PROGRAM INCLUSION COUNCIL CREATING DIVERSITY AWARENESS IN THE WORKPLACE CREATING DIVERSITY AWARENESS IN THE WORKPLACE NEWSLETTER NOVEMBER 2011 DECEMBER
  3. 3. Help Us Give Back This Holiday Season! Our Employeeʼs Personal Celebrations! The DPIC team has launched a company-wide Oscar Galvez, Dell Team Chicago Help Desk
 clothing drive to benefit The Salvation Army and local Each time I would travel to Zacatecas, Mexico, with my family, it would public schools this holiday season. These items meet be an adventure. The best adventures were around Christmas time. one of the most basic needs of the people who turn Around the holidays, my dadʼs & moms little village would celebrate a to The Salvation Army for help.! nine day “novena,” preceding Christmas. The nine days were to ! represent the nine months of Maryʼs pregnancy, leading up to the birth Spread some cheer and warmth by bringing in new or of Jesus Christ. Although most of the ceremony would consist of gently used clothing (coats, sweaters, sweatshirts, religious belief, it was a great opportunity to bond as a community. etc) from December 9 th -December 16 th at Everyone in the town was invited to join in the festivities. The participating Staff Management | SMX locations. The ceremony starts from the Catholic Church, in the middle of the town. Salvation Army will pick-up all donated items on The church would get volunteers from the children to dress up as the December 16th.! Mary and Joseph. Then the priest would lead the way via a march all ! through the town, followed by the people with candles in their hands. Thank you in advance to office 133-Shannon Burke, Everyone would sing songs and pray for the entire march. Once we 150-Willis Markel, 706-John Curd, 117-John would reach the church again, pot luck of food would be awaiting McInnes, 0110-Avery Yancey, 781-Katie Smith for everyone. The children would gather around a piñata and mini games your participation.! for some fun. At the conclusion, we would all get little grab bags with ! candies, peanuts, and oranges. It was truly a memorable experience. If you are interested in hosting a clothing drive please Thank you for letting me share my story with you.! contact us and we can help you with posters etc.! ! Janice Weiner, Executive Director of Business Solutions
 Ways to Celebrate the Holidays in the Workplace Appropriately! (written by her daughter Sam Weiner, age 15)
 Hanukah is a time to be together & celebrate our heritage. It occurs Office Party Etiquette! on the 25th of the Jewish month, Kislev which falls in December. Holiday office parties can be a great time for networking Many years ago, the Jewish Temples were seized by enemy soldiers. and really getting to know the people you work with as One man, named Mathias, stood up to the soldiers & as a result he well as those in higher positions in the company. But and his five sons had to hide in the mountains to avoid execution. the office holiday party can also be an opportunity to Along with them, a small group of supporters followed. Even though easily make a lot of career mistakes, one drink at a they were completely outnumbered by the enemy soldiers, they time. In a recent national survey by nonprofit Caron decided to go and fight. They were victorious. After their triumph, Treatment Centers, more than half the people whoʼve they went to the temple in Jerusalem, which was completely attended work-related outings say theyʼve observed the destroyed. In order to purify and rededicate the temple, they wanted following among colleagues under the influence of to light the Menorah that had survived the brutality of the soldiers for alcohol:! eight days and nights. To their dismay there was only enough oil left •  30% Seen someone flirt with a co-worker/supervisor! to burn for one night. But miraculously, the oil lasted for eight days •  26% Heard a colleague/supervisor share and eight nights. This has come to be known as the miracle of inappropriate details about themselves/co-worker! Hanukah.! •  19% Witnessed someone arguing or becoming aggressive with a colleague or supervisor! Our family comes together for this joyous occasion. It is eight days •  9% Learned of co-workers or supervisors engaging long, so we spend each night differently. The first night the entire in sexual activity while under the influence of alcohol! family comes over, and we play spin the dreidel, we eat corn beef Host a Holiday Gift Swap (White Elephant)! ! sandwiches and potato pancakes called latkes. My father makes the Holiday games for the workplace should be fun and There are many traps you can easily fall into at the best homemade latkes and we all canʼt wait to have them again. work-appropriate without being too juvenile.! office holiday party, so here is our guide so you can be Then we light the menorah while singing the prayers of Hanukah. The ! aware of them:! best part is that as kids, we receive Hanukah gelt (money), from the This game is played at many office holiday parties. 1.  Donʼt hook-up with a co-worker! grown ups. We also exchange simple gifts that show how much we Each employee brings a gift (pre-determine the value 2.  Donʼt get drunk! appreciate one another. The next seven days we light the candles and of the gifts) and draws a number. The person who 3.  Donʼt dress inappropriately! sing the prayers, each night we watch the menorah get brighter draws No. 1 chooses a gift and opens it. The person 4.  Donʼt come late and sneak out early! because another candle is added. The menorah not only represents who draws No. 2 can then choose an unopened gift 5.  Donʼt invite crashers! the holiday, but it represents our hope, and our will to live as Jews. or take the gift of the first person. When a persons 6.  Donʼt post pictures from the party on Facebook! Nothing will tear us down, just like the menorahʼs light shines bright, gift gets "stolen," they then choose another unopened 7.  Donʼt use the holiday party as the time to gift from the pile and open it in front of everyone. The announce your office relationship! our spirits will shine, as the Maccabees did when they were 8.  Donʼt dance too much! surrounded by darkness. ! game continues in this manner until the person with 9.  Donʼt monopolize your bossʼs time! the last number, who gets their choice of any gift in 10.  Make sure your conversations are work appropriate! the room.!DECEMBERNOVEMBER 2011 NEWSLETTER DIVERSITY PROGRAM INCLUSION COUNCIL CREATING DIVERSITY AWARENESS IN THE WORKPLACE CREATING DIVERSITY AWARENESS IN THE WORKPLACE NEWSLETTER NOVEMBER 2011 DECEMBER