Griffith University will spend the entirety of this week championing the spirit of diversity and inclusivity in celebration of Harmony Day this Thursday, March 21.
Across Griffith’s campuses, there will be an array of activities celebrating the ideals of peace, compassion, justice and human rights to amplify the message at the heart of Harmony Day: everybody belongs.
On the agenda are attractions including workshops, arts-and-craft events, cultural demonstrations and other performances, games, giveaways and more.
At Logan, the festivities even continue into next week; there’s a particularly extraordinary event on the cards as the campus prepares to welcome Young Australian of the Year 2018 finalist and former UNICEF young ambassador Rahila Haidary on Tuesday, 26 March.
Griffith Student Experience Officer Mr Babin Joy says that the Harmony Week celebrations are reflective of the University’s core values of inclusion and intercultural respect.
“We do celebrate harmony in everyday life, but I think it’s good to have this designated period just to learn more about each other,” Mr Joy said.
“We have Mother’s Day, we have Friendship Day and everything, so we should have some sort of designated days for us to think about harmony and diversity.
“I think it’s really important to know about other cultures and religions, to have that understanding, and of course that will break a lot of stereotypes and stigma, and foster that sense of inclusion.”
Beyond that, Mr Joy says, Harmony Week provides a beacon for interstate and international students who may feel disconnected from their support networks, reinforcing the notion that they are a welcome and deeply valued part of Griffith’s multicultural tapestry.
“Universities are one of the best communities where you see cross-cultural interactions throughout,” he said.
“It’s an opportunity for everyone to learn more about other cultures and to appreciate what we’ve got here at the University, being part of this multicultural community.
“So, when the University does events like Harmony Week, it’s building up that culture where everyone belongs and everyone can share their values. I think that’s awesome.”
Harmony Day has its roots in the UN-sponsored International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, and Griffith has been a proud supporter of the occasion for a number of years.
See Student Services’ website for more information about individual campus programs and other Harmony Week initiatives.