I feel like the older I get, the prouder I am of calling myself Australian, and this thing called Harmony Day is one of those days. Harmony Day is celebrated on March 21st in Australia every year, coinciding with the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
The ongoing message of Harmony Day has been: “Everyone belongs”. It celebrates Australia as a culturally diverse nation, and proudly, the most successful multicultural country too!
Harmony Day is about inclusiveness, respect and belonging, regardless of cultural or linguistic background. It’s about celebrating diversity- something that I have come to recognise and appreciate the more I travel and live in different corners of the world.
We are so lucky to be living in a time where connections can be made to some of the most far-flung places in the world. To be able to learn about different cultures and religions and is, I believe, such a blessing. It reminds us that no matter what our race, gender, disability, religion, culture or tradition, we all belong to this great place together. This amazing place called Earth.
So although you are probably not reading this in Australia and have never heard of this thing called Harmony Day before, I encourage you to learn about each other on this day. Google those eccentric places that are only mentioned once in the guide books. Look at a section of the world atlas that you’ve never even bothered looking at before. Listen to each other with your ears, your eyes and your heart.
I hope everyone feels a sense of belonging this Harmony Day, wherever you are in the world. Where do you feel like you belong? I’d love to hear your responses.
Here’s my dorky answer when I collaborated with ReachOut.com – a mental health organisation for young people and their parents that I volunteer at occasionally.