Appreciation in October
The month of October intentionally holds space to recognize, celebrate and learn from the past and present contributions/experiences of multiple identities and cultural heritages, including Hispanic Latin-American Heritage Month, Islamic History Month, Learning Disability Awareness Month, LGBT History Month, Women's History Month.
October also hosts extremely important days of religious, cultural, and commemorative significance, such as Yom Kippur, Sukkot, Diwali, and Bandi Chhor Divas.
With the intention of cultivating spaces where everyone can not only see that their lived experiences and identity are valued and celebrated, but also feel that same inclusiveness, October provides so many opportunities to deepen collective understanding and appreciation for each other, in meaningful and connective ways.
What is the Difference between Cultural Appreciation and Cultural Appropriation?
"Appreciation signals that we recognize the value and worth of a different culture’s traditions. It means we are striving for a fuller understanding of its historical and cultural implications and ramifications. Appreciation means we’re using it as a learning experience to enrich our own perspectives and to connect with PEOPLE of different cultures. It’s a way for us to center their voices and experiences, and use that to inform our own understanding."
"Appropriation, on the other hand, involves taking aspects of another culture out of context, and using it for personal interest, benefit, or financial gain. It exploits aspects of another culture for your own benefit. This is especially harmful to groups that have been
marginalized, and whose cultures and resources have been attacked."
"Cultural appreciation vs. appropriation can seem confusing at first, but in essence, it boils down to one thing: respect. Do you understand the meaning behind what you are doing, and do you respect it? Treat another culture/religion/history as you would want others to treat your own."
Here are some tips and guiding questions, to differentiate between appropriation and appreciation:
Educate Yourself & Listen
QUESTION: Do I understand the history of this symbol/experience?
Ask Questions and Check Your Biases
QUESTIONS: How can I push past my fear of not knowing or asking the wrong thing? How can I de-center myself in order to focus on truth? Am I leading with bias or with openness and humility?
Be Humble, Accept the Correction
QUESTIONS: Is someone from within the culture telling me something is off? If so, how can I reevaluate my actions? How can I open myself to their insights and incorporate their perspective? Am I signaling gratitude for their education?
Check Your Sources
QUESTIONS: Am I seeking out own voice perspectives, or is my information filtered through the lens of someone else who is a cultural outsider?
Seek Multiple Perspectives
QUESTION: Do I recognize that cultures are multifaceted with vastly varying experiences?
Consider your Setting
QUESTIONS: Am I appreciating this aspect of a culture in an appropriate setting? Do I understand how my actions connect to the setting?
With Halloween Approaching, Remember Cultures are not Costumes
"Around Halloween, cultural appropriation often manifests in the form of wearing “costumes” that rely on specific culture signifiers or stereotypes. Dressing up as an ethnicity, race or culture that is not your own is problematic and racist, and it’s up to folks who are not impacted by those situations to work together to ensure that it doesn’t continue among our friend groups, families and communities."
From site and campaign by Laurier Students; Public Interest Research Group's
What is the Costume Campaign...And Why Do We Do It?"
Here is the link to the site:
History and Heritage Months:
1. History and heritage months are opportunities to centre, listen and learn from communities that have traditionally not had the same opportunities to share and celebrate their lived experiences and stories;
2. These months provide opportunities for communities to learn from each other beyond the dominant "eurocentric" norm, exploring events/experiences from different perspectives, deepening global understanding of the similarities and differences in lived experiences.
3. Lastly, these months provide opportunities to recognize the intersecting barriers different communities face, and share that awareness to work towards more equitable outcomes for all.
Islamic History Month
"Islamic History Month Canada (IHMC) in October aims to celebrate, inform, educate, and share with fellow Canadians the rich Muslim heritage and contributions to society: Contributions in sciences, humanities, medicine, astronomy, and other disciplines that have greatly benefited human progress. IHMC believes that through education and sharing positive stories, all Canadians can grow and connect in the best way possible."
Hispanic-Latin American Heritage
"Ontario is home to more than 400,000 first-, second-and third-generation Canadian of Hispanic origin. As early as 1914, Canadians who originated from 23 Hispanic countries began immigrating to the province and today the Hispanic community is one of the fastest-growing in Ontario.
When Honouring History and Heritage Months, It is important to Recognize Past and Present Contributions through an Intersectional Approach
Resources | LGBTHistoryMonth.com
Beginning October 1, a new LGBT Icon is presented daily, with a video, biography and other resources, including an 8.5" x 11" PDF bio. To access the information, click on the name in the left column. For convenience, you may download all 31 of the bios in a single PDF file by clicking on the link, below.
Women's History Month
October is Women's History Month in Canada, a time to celebrate the women and girls from our past, and our present, who are contributing to a better, more inclusive Canada. In 1992, the Government of Canada designated October as Women's History Month, marking the beginning of an annual celebration of the outstanding achievements of women and girls throughout Canada's history.
Equity Matters: Equity and Anti-Racism Supports and Resources
The LDSB Equity team is excited to continue working with both staff and students, providing resources and spaces that foster a strong sense of belonging, so everyone can see themselves in Limestone!
Please do not hesitate to contact us; we look forward to working with you!
7-12 Equity & Inclusion Consultant
K-8 Equity & Inclusion Consultant
613-544-6925 ext. 213
Human Rights & Equity Officer