Roncalli Catholic Logo

P : (402) 571-7670

F : (402) 571-3216

RCHS

6401 Sorensen Pkwy

Omaha, NE 68152

School Hours:

Monday - Friday

8:10 am - 3:15 pm

Roncalli Catholic Logo

P : (402) 571-7670

F : (402) 571-3216

RCHS

6401 Sorensen Pkwy

Omaha, NE 68152

School Hours:

Monday - Friday

8:10 am - 3:15 pm

Diversity

Upcoming Events
  1. All School Mass

    October 21
  2. Blood Drive

    October 28
  3. Public School Information Night

    October 28 @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

With the courage to build an inclusive community of faith, Roncalli Catholic welcomes and embraces the unique attributes of every member of our Crimson Pride family and our local community.

Fostering inclusion and awareness around multicultural education and taking a culturally responsive approach to teaching benefits all students. Not only does creating greater multicultural awareness and inclusion help our students with different backgrounds and needs succeed, but it prepares our students for the real world, giving them the courage to follow the right path toward their unique futures.

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO TEACH CULTURE?

From THE IMPORTANCE OF DIVERSITY & CULTURAL AWARENESS IN THE CLASSROOM – Drexel University School of Education

It is important to remind ourselves why diversity and cultural awareness is so crucial in the classroom and the benefits it can have on students now and in the long-term. Teaching diversity exposes students to various cultural and social groups, preparing students to become better citizens in their communities. These culturally responsive teaching strategies will help you to promote diversity in the classroom.

With these culturally responsive teaching strategies in mind, it’s important to remind ourselves why diversity and cultural awareness is so crucial in the classroom and the benefits it can have on students now and in the long-term.

Students Become More Empathetic

Promoting awareness and creating a personal connection with diverse cultures in the classroom can prevent students from developing prejudices later in life. It allows them to empathize with people different from themselves since they’re more aware of the experiences someone of a different race or cultural group may face.

Students Gain a Better Understanding of Lessons and People

When working and learning with people from a variety of backgrounds and cultures present in the classroom, students gain a more comprehensive understanding of the subject matter. It also teaches students how to use their own strengths and points of view to contribute in a diverse working environment.

Students Become More Open-Minded

Naturally, by exposing students to a diverse range of opinions, thoughts, and cultural backgrounds, you’re encouraging them to be more open-minded later in life. This will make them open to new ideas and be able to attain a greater comprehension on a topic by taking in different points of view.

Students Feel More Confident and Safe

Students who learn about different cultures during their education feel more comfortable and safe with these differences later in life. This allows them to interact in a wider range of social groups and feel more confident in themselves as well as in their interactions with others.

Students Are Better Prepared for a Diverse Workplace

With the rise of globalization, it’s more important to be able to work with people from different cultures and social groups. If students are exposed to diversity and learn cultural awareness in the classroom, it sets them up to flourish in the workforce.

Read our Blog Posts on Diversity

Feb
25

Black History Month at RCHS

Roncalli Catholic High School Senior, Syionna Conner-Wilder, spearheaded a month-long33 effort to bring Black History Month closer to all the students. “Last year at Roncalli Catholic, Black History Month was recognized but I wanted to do more to shed light on the impact that African American’s had and continue to have in our country,” says Conner-Wilder. “This is my last year and I wanted to start something more and hope that it lasts once I am gone. We have more Black students here, especially the Freshman class. My goal is to get them involved and have this celebration become part…

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Sep
14

Hispanic Heritage Month

September 15 - October 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month in the United States. The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988. It was enacted into law on August 17, 1988. The day of September 15 is significant because it is the anniversary of independence for Latin American countries Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on September 16 and September 18, respectively.  In order to celebrate and remember a few contributions of Hispanic Americans, please take…

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Diversity Calendar

To see the full list visit Excellent Presence.

April is Celebrate Diversity Month. It was started in 2004 to recognize and honor the diversity surrounding us all. By celebrating differences and similarities during this month, organizers hope that people will get a deeper understanding of each other.

May 21 is World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, a day set aside by the United Nations in 2001  as an opportunity to deepen our understanding of the values of cultural diversity and to learn to live together better.

October brings Global Diversity Awareness Month to remind us of the positive impact a diverse workforce of men and women can have on a society.

October 4 through October 10, 2020 (the first full week of October) marks National Diversity Week, founded in 1998 to raise awareness about the diversity which has shaped, and continues to shape, the United States. It’s celebrated on a city- or company-wide scale across the U.S., though some organizations observe it at other times of the year.

October 19, 2020 (every third Monday in October) is Multicultural Diversity Day, a national day created by Cleorah Scruggs, a fourth-grade teacher in Flint, Michigan, the day was adopted as a national event by the NEA’s 1993 Representative Assembly to “increase awareness of the tremendous need to celebrate our diversity collectively.”

January is Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month began by President Barack Obama. On December 28th 2016, he called upon businesses, national & community organizations, families, and all Americans to recognize the vital role they must play in ending all forms of slavery, and to observe this month with appropriate programs and activities.

January 1 is the Emancipation Proclamation anniversary. On this date in 1863, President Abraham Lincoln signed this document proclaiming that all slaves living within rebelling Confederate states “are, and henceforth shall be, free.”

January 5 is George Washington Carver Day. Dr. Carver was awarded the Roosevelt Medal in 1939 for saving Southern agriculture, which was later instrumental in feeding the United States during World War II). For this reason, Dr. Carver’s hometown was made a historic site upon his death on Jan. 5, 1943. During the 79th Congress, Public Law 290 was passed to designate January 5th of each year as George Washington Carver Recognition Day.

January 21 (every third Monday of January) is Martin Luther King Day, commemorating the birth of Martin Luther King, Jr., the recipient of the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize and an activist for nonviolent social change until his assassination in 1968.

February is Black History Month in the United States and Canada. Since 1976, the month has been designated to remember the contributions of people of the African Diaspora. Historian Carter G. Woodson launched the holiday because contributions that African Americans have made to U.S. culture and society are largely omitted from and overlooked in history books.

February 4 is Rosa Parks Day, is an American holiday in honor of the civil rights leader. In California and Missouri, Rosa Parks Day is celebrated on her birthday, February 4. In Ohio and Oregon, it’s celebrated on the day she was arrested, December 1.

February 14 is Frederick Douglass Day. The day marks the birthday of Frederick Douglass (born Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey). He was an American social reformer, orator, writer and statesman. After escaping from slavery, he became a leader of the abolitionist movement, gaining note for his dazzling oratory and incisive antislavery writing. He stood as a living counter-example to slaveholders’ arguments that slaves did not have the intellectual capacity to function as independent American citizens.

March 5 is Crispus Attucks Day, or Boston Massacre Day. It has been observed since 1771, mainly in Boston, Massachusetts. Since 1949, Crispus Attucks Day has also been a legal day of observance in the state of New Jersey. Crispus Attucks was the first Black American to die during the Boston Massacre on March 5, 1770, a key event leading up to the Revolutionary War. For this reason, he is considered the first American fatality of the War.

March 10 is Harriet Tubman Day, an American holiday in honor of the anti-slavery activist Harriet Tubman (born Araminta Ross), observed nationally, in the State of New York, and locally around the State of Maryland. Despite great hardship and great danger, Ms. Tubman undertook 19 trips as a conductor to lead hundreds of slaves to freedom. She later became an eloquent and effective speaker on behalf of the movement to abolish slavery, also serving the Civil War as a soldier, spy, and nurse, among other roles. She died on March 10, 1913.

March 16 marks publication of the First Black Newspaper in America. In 1827, Samuel Cornish and John B. Russwurm debuted “Freedom’s Journal,” the first African-American-owned and operated newspaper published in the U.S. All 103 issues have been digitized and are available at the Wisconsin Historical Society’s website.

March 21 is the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. This annual day commemorates the lives that have been lost to fight for democracy and equal human rights in South Africa during the Apartheid regime.

April 15 is Jackie Robinson Day, a traditional event which occurs annually in Major League Baseball, commemorating and honoring the day Jackie Robinson made his major league debut. April 15 was Opening Day in 1947, Robinson’s first season in the Major Leagues. Initiated for the first time on April 15, 2004, Jackie Robinson Day is celebrated each year on that day.

April 16 is Emancipation Day, a holiday in Washington DC to mark the anniversary of the signing of the Compensated Emancipation Act, which president Abraham Lincoln signed on April 16, 1862. It freed more than 3000 slaves in the District of Columbia.

May 17 is the Anniversary of the School Desegregation Ruling. In 1954, racial segregation in public schools was unanimously ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in Brown v. Board of Education, found to violate the 14th Amendment clause guaranteeing equal protection under the law.

May 17, 2020 (the third Sunday of May) is “Malcolm X Day”, an American holiday in honor of civil rights leader Malcolm X, celebrated either on his birthday (May 19, 1925) or the 3rd Sunday of May. The commemoration was proposed as an official state holiday in the State of Illinois in 2015. As of present, only the city of Berkeley, California observes the holiday with city offices and schools closed.

May 19 is Malcolm X’s Birthday, an American holiday in honor of civil rights leader Malcolm X, whose real name is El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz. Some choose to celebrate either on his birthday (May 19, 1925), or on the 3rd Sunday of May.

May 25 is African Liberation Day. Also known as African Freedom Day, it is a day to “mark, each year, the onward progress of the liberation movement, and to symbolize the determination of the People of Africa to free themselves from foreign domination and exploitation.”

June is African American Music Appreciation Month. It began in 1979 when Kenny Gamble, Ed Wright, and Dyana Williams developed the idea to set aside a month dedicated to celebrating the impact of Black music. In 2009, President Barack Obama declared the start of summer as a celebration for all the Black “musicians, composers, singers, and songwriters [who] have made enormous contributions to our culture.” On May 31, 2016, President Obama officially declared the month of June as African American Music Appreciation Month.

June 14, 2020 (second Sunday in June) is the “Odunde Festival,” or African New YearThis one-day festival is mostly a street market catered to African-American interests and the African diaspora derived from the tradition of the Yoruba people of Nigeria in celebration of the new year. It’s centered at the intersection of Grays Ferry Avenue and South Street in Philadelphia, PA. The Odunde festival started in Philly in 1975, established by Lois Fernandez with just $100 in neighborhood donations. Now, this celebration is the largest African celebration on the east coast of the U.S.

June 12 is Loving Day, which commemorates the date in 1967 that an interracial couple got the U.S. Supreme Court to strike down anti-miscegenation laws in the country. Today, Blacks, whites and others celebrate June 12 as Loving Day throughout the nation.

June 19 is Juneteenth, (AKA “Freedom Day” or “Emancipation Day”), and is observed as a public holiday in 14 U.S. states. This celebration honors the day in 1865 when slaves in Texas and Louisiana finally heard that they were free, two full months after the end of the Civil War. June 19, therefore, became the day of emancipation for thousands of Black U.S. citizens. While most slaves received their freedom after President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, slaves in Texas had to wait more than 2.5 years later to receive their freedom — on June 19, 1865 when the Union Army arrived in Galveston ordering that slavery end in the “Lone Star State.” Ever since, African Americans have celebrated that date as “Juneteenth Independence Day.” Juneteenth is an official State Holiday in Texas.

June 23 is Birthday of Haile Selassie (Rastafari), former Emperor of Ethiopia who Rastas considered to be God and their Savior, who would return to Africa the members of the Black community living in exile. The Rastafari movement surfaced in Jamaica among peasant and working-class Black people and was propagated through the Rastas’ interest in reggae music, most notably that of Bob Marley, the Jamaican-born singer and songwriter.

July 18 is Nelson Mandela International Day in recognition of Mandela’s birthday on July 18, 2009, launched via unanimous decision of the UN General Assembly. It was inspired by a call Nelson Mandela made a year earlier for the next generation to take on the burden of leadership in addressing the world’s social injustices by saying, “It is in your hands now.” This day is more than a celebration of Madiba’s life, work, and legacy; it’s a global movement to take action to change the world for the better.

July 19 is the Maafa Commemoration. This commemoration provides an opportunity for members of the African-descended community to remember the millions of Africans — men, women, and children — who were sold, kidnapped, shipped and who died along the route from Africa to the Americas.

August 13 is the date in 1920 that the red, black, and green Pan-African flag was formally adopted by The Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities League (UNIA-ACL) in Article 39 of the Declaration of the Rights of the Negro Peoples of the World.

August 17 is Marcus Garvey Day, which celebrates the birthday of the Jamaican politician and activist who is revered by Rastafarians. Garvey is credited with starting the Back to Africa movement, which encouraged those of African descent to return to the land of their ancestors during and after slavery in North America.

September 11, 2020 (or, during a leap year, September 12) is Enkutatash, or the Ethiopian New Year. Rastafarians celebrate the New Year on this date and believe that Ethiopia is their spiritual home, a place they desire to return to. Enkutatash means “gift of jewels” in Amharic.  The celebration is both religious and secular with the day beginning with church services, followed by the family meal. Young children receive small gifts of money or bread after the girls gather flowers and sing, and boys paint pictures of saints. Families visit friends, and adults drink Ethiopian beer.

September 25 is when school desegregation came to Little Rock, AR. In 1957, nine teenagers became the first African-Americans to attend the all white Central High School in Arkansas, putting a national spotlight on racism. Former President Eisenhower sent federal troops to protect the students and ensure compliance with the Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education school desegregation decision.

October 1 is Jerry Rescue Day. This observance celebrates the rescue of William Jerry Henry. Known as “Jerry,” Henry was a fugitive slave who was captured in Syracuse, New York, but freed from jail on October 1, 1851, with the help of abolitionists. Originally a protest against the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850, the “Jerry Rescue” was commemorated on that day each year from 1852 to 1859, and on occasion after that time.

October 2 marks the date Thurgood Marshall was sworn into the Supreme Court. In 1967, Judge Marshall became the first African American to sit on the highest court in the land. Opposing discrimination and the death penalty, he championed free speech and civil liberties.

October 3 marks the date Frank Robinson was signed as Major League Manager. In 1974, hired by the Cleveland Indians, he became the first African American to manage a major league baseball team.

October 17 is Black Poetry Day, observed annually. This is a day to honor past and present black poets. Jupiter Hammon, the first published black poet in the United States, was born in Long Island, New York, on October 17, 1711. In honor of Hammon’s birth, we celebrate the contributions of all African Americans to the world of poetry.

November 22, 2020 (fourth Sunday in November) is Umoja Karamu Celebration, created in 1971 by Edward Simms Jr. to inject new meaning and solidarity into the Black family through ceremony and symbol. Umoja Karamu means “unity feast” in Swahili, and is based around five colors and their meanings, which represent five historical periods in African-American history. Black represents Black families before slavery, White symbolizes the scattering of Black families during slavery, Red denotes the liberation from slavery, Green signifies the struggle for civil equality and Gold implies hope for the future.

December 1 is Rosa Parks Day, is an American holiday in honor of the civil rights leader. In Ohio and Oregon, Rosa Parks Day is celebrated on the day she was arrested, December 1. In California and Missouri, it is celebrated on her birthday, February 4.

December 2 is the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery, marking the date the General Assembly adopted the “United Nations Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others” (resolution 317(IV) of December 2, 1949). The focus of this day is on eradicating contemporary forms of slavery, such as trafficking in persons, sexual exploitation, the worst forms of child labor, forced marriage, and the forced recruitment of children for use in armed conflict.

December 26-January 1 is Kwanzaa, a holiday established in 1996 by Maulana Karenga as a time for African Americans to “discover and bring forth the best of our culture, both ancient and current, and use it as a foundation to bring into being models of human excellence and possibilities to enrich and expand our lives.”

March 7, 2020 begins Carnaval Miami, a 10-day festival in Miami. This free block party spans 19 blocks, drawing up to 1 million people, and features cultural events such as a fishing tournament, soccer tournament, cooking contest, a 10K, the “Miss Carnaval Miami” beauty pageant (2/8/2020), a domino competition, and more. It was started more than 40 years ago by a group of young Cuban-Americans in a gesture of good will, as waves of immigrants fleeing Fidel Castro’s Communist regime fled to Miami. Money raised by the Carnaval Miami is reinvested to support the local culture, for instance to fund student scholarships.

March 31 is Cesar Chavez holiday in California, Arizona and Texas. This holiday, proclaimed by President Obama in 2014, honors the Mexican-American labor and civil rights activist who gained attention in the 1960s as the leader of the United Farm Workers. His non-violent advocacy approach earned him worldwide respect. California, Arizona and Texas have made the day a state holiday, while other states are still considering doing so.

April 30 is El Día de los Niños. This special day, originating in Mexico, celebrates the importance of children. This Latin American tradition is now recognized in the U.S., often as a day to celebrate children, families, and literacy. While Children’s Day is not an official holiday in Mexico (school is in session), it’s generally a day filled with festivities designed to help children feel special.

May 5 is Cinco de Mayo originating from Mexico. It marks the defeat of the French army during the Battle of Puebla (Batalla de Puebla) in Mexico on May 5, 1862, but is actually considered to be relatively minor to native Mexican history, and is really only celebrated in the Mexican state of Puebla. In the U.S., Cinco de Mayo is celebrated to commemorate Mexican culture and heritage, chiefly in cities and towns with large Mexican populations, such as Denver, CO, Portland, OR, and Chicago, IL, and is recognized with parades, food, music, and dancing. (NOTE: Cinco de Mayo is NOT Mexican Independence Day, as many Americans believe. Mexican Independence Day is September 16, one of their most important national holidays.)

May 10 is Dia de las Madres (Mothers’ Day), observed on this date in Mexico and other Latin-American countries. The first official Mother’s’ Day celebration in Mexico was held on May 10, 1922.

June 12 to June 14, 2020 (second weekend of June) holds events associated with the National Puerto Rican Day Parade, chiefly in New York City, but now recognized in various other U.S. locations. The parade, held on the second Sunday in June, starts on Fifth Avenue on 44th Street and goes up to 86th Street. It continues to have tremendous attendance, now more than ever due to Puerto Rican Supreme Court Judge Sonia Sotomayor, an influential figure who grew up in the projects in the Bronx. Judge Sotomayor managed to attend Princeton and Yale, going on to become one of the most successful Hispanic women to date in the judicial field in the U.S.

June 19 – 24 is Les Fogueres de Sant Joan (“Bonfires of Saint John”), is a Spanish festival dedicated to fire. It includes events such as the proclamation (The Pregón), the setting up of the bonfires (the Plantà), the procession of the effigies (Cabalgata del Ninot), and parades and processions in different neighborhoods of Alicante in Spain. The main event on the 24th of June is the feast day of Saint John Baptist, when large satirical statues made of cardboard and wood are set alight.

August 15 is Asuncion de la Virgen (the Feast of the Assumption), celebrated by Catholics in Spanish-speaking countries. It celebrates the belief in Mary’s ascending to heaven. This holiday has been celebrated since the 18th century and is also known as the Virgen de la Paloma. Many churches will present a statue of Mary on the altar and then have a procession on the streets that are filled with music, dance and a feast of local delicacies. You may even hear fireworks either in the day or the evening.

September 15–October 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month. This month corresponds with Mexican Independence Day, which is celebrated on September 16, and recognizes the revolution in 1810 that ended Spanish dictatorship.

September 16 is Mexican Independence Day. The day commemorates Sept. 16, 1810, when Father Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla urged Mexicans to rise up against the Spanish-born ruling class.

Oct 12 is Día de la Hispanidad (Spain), or Spanish National Day. This date (“Columbus Day,” U.S.), remembers the arrival of Christopher Columbus in America, a day with complex controversial meanings. Hispanics in the U.S. are split on their political feelings about the holiday. In most Spanish-speaking countries, it is celebrated as Dia de la Raza (Mexico), Día de las Culturas (Costa Rica), to celebrate the contributions of the country’s indigenous, Spanish, African, and Asian cultures. Latin Americans celebrate October 12 under many different names, including Day of Respect for Cultural Diversity (Argentina), Decolonization Day (Bolivia), Day of Interculturality and Plurinationality (Ecuador), Day of Indigenous Peoples and Intercultural Dialogue (Peru), and Indigenous Resistance Day (Venezuela). October 12th is not recognized as a holiday in Cuba.

November 1 mainly as Día de los Santos Inocentes (“Holy Innocents Day”), but also as Día de los Angelitos (“Day of the Little Angels”), celebrated in Mexico, Central America. It is an observance festivity to celebrate and honor one’s ancestors, specifically children and infants. It’s based on the belief that there is an interaction between the living world and the world of spirits.

November 2 is Día de los Muertos or Día de los Difuntos (“Day of the Dead”), celebrated in Mexico, Central America. In most regions of Mexico, November 2 is to honor deceased adults. On the Día de los Muertos, the almas, or the spirits of the dead, are said to come back for family reunions. Many celebrate setting up ofrendas (altars) in their homes to honor the memory of deceased loved ones and to welcome their visiting souls. Others visit their loved one’s cemetery plot and decorate it with flowers, candles and food. The holiday is celebrated with family and community gatherings, music, and feasting, and the festivity of its observance acknowledges death as an integral part of life.

December 6 is Día de la Con­stitu­ción (Constitution Day), which marks the an­niversary of a ref­er­en­dum held in Spain on Decem­ber 6, 1978, in which a new con­sti­tu­tion was ap­proved for Spain. This was an im­port­ant step in Spain’s transition to be­com­ing a con­sti­tu­tional mon­archy and demo­cracy.

Decem­ber 8 is La In­macu­lada Con­cep­ción de la Vir­gen María (the Holy­day Day of Ob­lig­a­tion of the Im­macu­late Con­cep­tion of Mary). It celebrates December 8, 1854, when Pope Pius IX is­sued a doc­u­ment stat­ing the im­port­ance of the Im­macu­late Con­cep­tion in the Cath­olic Church. The Feast of the Im­macu­late Con­cep­tion refers to the be­lief that Je­sus’s mother Mary was con­ceived without sin, and that God chose her to be Je­sus’s mother.

December 12 is Feast Day at Our Lady of Guadalupe. This day commemorates the appearance of the Virgin Mary near Mexico City in 1531.

December 16-24 is Las Posadas, a nine-day celebration in Mexico commemorating the trials Mary and Joseph endured during their journey to Bethlehem.

February 6 is the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation, a United Nations-sponsored annual awareness day that marks part of the UN’s efforts to eradicate female genital mutilation. About 120 to 140 million women have been subject to FGM and 3 million girls are at risk each year, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). FGM relates to all procedures that involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injuries to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons. This practice is an abuse of human rights and causes serious health complications, including fatal bleeding.

February 12 is the International Day of Action on Women’s Health, which focuses on protecting the sexual and reproductive health of women.

March is Women’s History Month. an annual declared month that highlights the contributions of women to events in history and contemporary society. It is celebrated in March in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia, corresponding with International Women’s Day on March 8.

March 8 is International Women’s Day. First observed in 1911 in Germany. In August 1910, an International Women’s Conference was organized to precede the general meeting of the Socialist Second International in Copenhagen, Denmark. Inspired in part by the American socialists, German Socialist Luise Zietz proposed the establishment of an annual International Women’s Day and was seconded by fellow socialist and later communist leader Clara Zetkin. It has now become a major global celebration honoring women’s economic, political, and social achievements.

March 10 marks the annual observance of National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (NWGHAAD). Since the inception of this day in 2005, NWHAAD’s goal has been to raise awareness about how women can protect themselves and their partners from HIV. This day brings organizations and communities together to help women and girls protect themselves from HIV through prevention, testing and treatment.

June 23 is International Widows Day, an annual global awareness day launched by the United Nations in 2010 to raise awareness of the violation of human rights that widows suffer in many countries, following the death of their spouses. This day is also an opportunity for action towards achieving full rights and recognition for widows -– too long invisible, uncounted, and ignored.

August 26 is Women’s Equality Day, which commemorates the August 26, 1920 certification of the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution, which gave women the right to vote. Congresswoman Bella Abzug first introduced a proclamation for Women’s Equality Day in 1971. Since that time, every president has published a proclamation recognizing August 26 as Women’s Equality Day.

September 20, 2020 (third Sunday in September) is National Women’s Friendship Day. It was created by women, and for women — by the Kappa Delta Sorority in 1999. The objective of this day is to promote special friendship among women.

September 22 is American Business Women’s Day, observed annually. It is a day set aside to honor and reflect on the contributions and accomplishments of the millions of women in the workforce and the millions of women business owners in the U.S.

October 11 is the International Day of the Girl Child. The main aims of the day are to promote girls’ empowerment and fulfillment of their human rights, while also highlighting the challenges that girls all over the world face. The celebration of the day also “reflects the successful emergence of girls and young women as a distinct cohort in development policy, programming, campaigning, and research.”

October 15 is the International Day of Rural Women, the first of which was observed in 2008. This new international day, established by the General Assembly in its resolution 62/136 of 12/18/07, recognizes “the critical role and contribution of rural women, including indigenous women, in enhancing agricultural and rural development, improving food security, and eradicating rural poverty.” It is purposely held the day before World Food Day in order to highlight the role played by rural women in food production and food security.

October 29 marks the date that the National Organization for Women (NOW) was founded in 1966 to take action to bring about equality for all women. The foundation focuses on a broad range of women’s rights issues, including economic justice, pay equity, racial discrimination, women’s health & body image, women with disabilities, reproductive rights & justice, family law, marriage & family formation rights of same-sex couples, representation of women in the media, and global feminist issues.

November 25 is International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, designated in 1999 by the UN General Assembly. At least 1 out of every 3 women around the world has been beaten, coerced into sex, or otherwise abused in her lifetime — with the abuser usually someone known to her.

November 25 to December 10, the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, aims to raise public awareness and mobilize people everywhere to bring about change. (You’ll notice that the beginning of the 16 days is actually Int’l Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, and the final day is Human Rights Day.)

March is National Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month. It which was established to increase awareness and understanding of issues affecting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

March is National Multiple Sclerosis Education and Awareness Month. It was established to raise public awareness of the autoimmune disease that affects the brain and spinal cord and assist those with multiple sclerosis in making informed decisions about their health care.

March 13 – April 15 is Deaf History Month. This observance celebrates key events in deaf history, including the founding of Gallaudet University and the American School for the Deaf.

March 21 is World Down Syndrome Day. Each year the voice of people with Down syndrome, and those who live and work with them, grows louder.

April is Autism Awareness Month, established to raise awareness about the developmental disorder that affects children’s normal development of social and communication skills.

April 2 is World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD), created to raise awareness of the developmental disorder around the globe. WAAD was adopted by the United Nations in 2007 to shine a bright light on autism as a growing global health priority.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month (also referred to as “Mental Health Month”). Observed in the month of May in the U.S. since 1949, it reaches millions of people through media, local events, and screenings to raise awareness about mental illness and related issues in the States.

May is Better Hearing and Speech Month, begun to raise awareness about communication disorders and promote treatment to improve quality of life for those who experience problems with speaking, understanding, or hearing.

May 9 is National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day, to raise awareness about the importance of children’s mental health and to show that positive mental health is essential to a child’s healthy development from birth.

May 30 is World Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Awareness Day. World MS Day is officially marked on 30 May each year to bring the global MS community together to share stories, raise awareness, and campaign with and for everyone affected by multiple sclerosis. Events and campaigns take place throughout the month of May.

July 26 is Disability Independence Day, which marks the anniversary of the 1990 signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act. This Act provides protection from employment discrimination as well as better access to goods, services, and communications for people with disabilities.

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month. 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. The annual event draws attention to employment barriers that still need to be addressed.

December 3 is International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD). Since 1992, the United Nations’ IDPD has been celebrated globally each year on 3 December to promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity, rights, and well-being of persons with disabilities (PwD). It also seeks to increase awareness of gains to be derived from the integration of PwD in every aspect of political, social, economic, and cultural life. Each year the day focuses on a different issue.

January 16 is National Religious Freedom Day. National Religious Freedom Day commemorates the Virginia General Assembly’s adoption of Thomas Jefferson’s landmark Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom on January 16, 1786. That statute became the basis for the establishment clause of the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and led to the freedom of religion for all Americans. Religious Freedom Day is officially proclaimed on January 16 each year by an annual statement by the President of the United States.

January 18 is World Religion Day. This day is observed by those of the Baha’i faith to promote interfaith harmony and understanding. World Religion Day starts sundown of January 17.

January 25 to February 8, 2020 marks the Chinese New Year. This year is the Year of the Rat. Chinese New Year is the most important holiday in the Chinese lunisolar calendar and is recognized by gift giving, parades, decorations, and feasting. The celebration culminates with the Lantern Festival on March 5.

January 31 is the birthday anniversary of Guru Har Rai, the seventh Sikh guru. He is remembered for his sensitivity towards nature and his passion for preserving it. In a way, the Sikhs are stepping forward to protect vulnerable Mother Nature to meet the challenge of the present day, as a tribute to their seventh Guru, Sri Guru Har Rai Ji.

April is Arab American Heritage Month, marking a time to reflect on the contributions Arab Americans have made to the U.S., and the diverse group of people who make up the nation’s Middle Eastern population. The month of April is a special opportunity to enhance understanding of the nuanced and diverse aspects of Arab American heritage that is often forgotten or intentionally avoided by the media.

May is National Older Americans Month, which recognizes the contributions of older adults across the nation. Older Americans Month also serves to raise awareness concerning elder abuse and neglect.

May is Asian-American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month in the United States. 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. The majority of the workers who laid the tracks on the project were Chinese immigrants.

June 14, 2020 is known as National Children’s Day in the United States, celebrated annually on the second Sunday in June. A day to honor the children in our lives, National Children’s Day is a time to slow down our fast-paced lives, turn off the tech, and refocus on the important things. Taking one day may not be enough, but using it as an opportunity to redirect our family’s focus and bonding can be an important step in a child’s life.

June 15 is Native American Citizenship Day, commemorating the day in 1924 when the U.S. Congress passed legislation recognizing the Citizenship of Native Americans.

June 21 is National Indigenous People’s Day. The day was first celebrated as National Aboriginal Day in 1996, after it was proclaimed that year by then Governor General of Canada Roméo LeBlanc, to be celebrated annually on June 21. This date was chosen as the statutory holiday for many reasons, including its cultural significance as the Summer solstice, and the fact that it is a day on which many Indigenous peoples and communities traditionally celebrate their heritage. It was renamed in 2017.

August 9 is International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples. The focus this year is “Indigenous peoples building alliances: Honoring treaties, agreements and other constructive arrangements.”

October 2 is the International Day of Nonviolence, and Gandhi’s Birthday. Mohandas Karamchand “Mahatma” Gandhi is one of the most respected spiritual and political leaders of the twentieth century. Through nonviolent resistance, he helped free India from British rule. The Indian people called Gandhi “Mahatma,” meaning “Great Soul.”

October 12, 2020 is Indigenous People’s Day. Beginning in 1992 on this day, drums across the USA and in different time zones coordinate ceremonies and observances at 12 p.m. to celebrate and honor 500 years of North American Indigenous people’s resistance and survival. From that day to the present, Native Americans observe Indigenous People’s Day, not Columbus Day. Indigenous People’s Day began in 1989 in South Dakota, where Lynn Hart and Governor Mickelson backed a resolution to celebrate Native American day on the second Monday of October, marking the beginning of the year of reconciliation in 1990. It was instituted in Berkeley, CA, in 1992, to coincide with the 500th anniversary of the arrival of Christopher Columbus in the Americas. Two years later, Santa Cruz, CA, instituted the holiday, and in the 2010s, various other cities and states took it up. It is similar to Native American Day, observed in September in California and Tennessee.

October 16 is World Food Day. Since 1979, this worldwide event has sought to increase awareness, understanding, and informed year-round action to alleviate hunger, malnutrition, and poverty.

October 27, 2020 (the last Tuesday in October)  is Mix It Up at Lunch Day, a national campaign that helps K-12 teachers develop inclusive school communities. Launched by Teaching Tolerance in 2002, Mix It Up at Lunch Day encourages students to move out of their comfort zones and connect with someone new over lunch. It’s a simple act with profound implications: Studies have shown that interactions across group lines can help reduce prejudice, biases, and misperceptions. (EDITOR’S NOTE 12/19/19: Awaiting date confirmation from tolerance.org.)

November is National Native American Heritage Month, initiated in 1915 by Dr. Arthur C. Parker, a Seneca Indian and Director of the Museum of Arts in Rochester, NY. This special time started as a single day designed to recognize the significant contributions the first Americans made to the establishment and growth of the U.S. Later, in 1990, then-President G.W. Bush approved the designation of the full month of November as what is also known as American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month.

December 7 to 11, 2020 is Inclusive Schools Week, an annual event sponsored by the Inclusive Schools Network (ISN) celebrating the progress schools have made in providing a supportive, quality education to students who are marginalized due to disability, gender, socioeconomic status, cultural heritage, language preference, and other factors. The first full week in December, it provides an important opportunity for educators, students, and parents to discuss what else needs to be done to ensure that their schools continue to improve their ability to successfully educate all children.

December 10 is International Human Rights Day, established by the United Nations in 1948 to commemorate the anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.