With equality, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) still very much high on the agenda for many organisations, HR leaders looking to embed a more diverse and welcoming culture should be aware of all celebrations and holiday days across the globe when planning their HR calendars for 2024.
With an abundance of upcoming events celebrating various traditions and religions from country to country and culture to culture, we’ve put together this calendar of just some of the dates you might want to recognise as an organisation – however, this is not an exhaustive list!
Most commonly celebrated by Western countries to mark the first day in the Gregorian calendar.
Celebrated by Eastern Orthodox Christians to recognise the anniversary of the birth of Jesus Christ.
Celebrated by Eastern Orthodox communities to mark the start of their new year.
Marking the start of a new year according to the lunar calendar, celebrated mainly in China and other East Asian countries, and more commonly known as Chinese New Year.
French for ‘Fat Tuesday’, also known as Shrove Tuesday or Pancake Day, a Christian celebration to reflect the practice of eating rich foods before the start of Lent (Ash Wednesday).
The ninth month of the Muslim calendar marks the start of the holy month of fasting, where Muslims fast during daylight hours to commemorate the first revelation of the Qur’an.
A five-day festival of fire in the city of Valencia, Spain, in commemoration of Saint Joseph where participants celebrate through various parades and firework displays.
A popular Hindu festival also known as the Festival of Colours, Love, and Spring, where participants throw coloured powders and water on one another to signify the triumph of good over evil and the love of the god and goddess Krishna and Radha.
A major Christian holiday commemorating the resurrection of Jesus Christ, usually celebrated with feasts, hymns, and the giving/receiving and hunting of chocolate eggs.
Marking the end of the fasting month of Ramadan, where Muslims celebrate through prayer and worship, the exchanging of gifts, and dressing in their best clothes.
Celebrated primarily in Northern India as a spring harvest celebration to mark the birth of Sikhism in 1699, Vaisakhi also – in many other parts of India – is the date for the Indian Solar New Year.
An important festival in the Jewish calendar to commemorate the Biblical story of the Israelites’ escape from slavery in Egypt, celebrated by a series of rituals including a traditional meal.
Celebrated mainly across Europe, the first day in May is often called May Day – a tradition originating from Celtic times to celebrate and welcome the end of winter and the start of the lighter months. Countries such as Hungary, Germany and England celebrate by dancing around a tall, brightly-decorated May Tree or May Pole.
Also known as Buddha Day, taking place at the full moon when the sun is in the zodiac sign of Taurus, and commemorating the birth, enlightenment, and death of the Buddha, marked by prayer and meditation.
One of the major festivals in Islam, honouring the faith and obedience of Prophet Ibrahim who was willing to sacrifice his son for God, celebrated through prayers and the exchanging of gifts and greetings.
U.S. public holiday commemorating the Declaration of Independence which established the United States of America in 1776, marked by large parades, concerts, and feasts.
To raise awareness and protect the rights of the world’s indigenous population, which include respect and preservation for the land, land use choices, and cultures of indigenous people.
Translating to ‘Birthday of the Prophet’, to mark the anniversary of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad’s birth, celebrated by sharing gifts and food, offering prayers, and decorating the streets with lights.
Starting at sundown and ending at the same time on the 4th, the two-day festival marks the start of the Jewish New Year, the 10 days of high holidays, and commemorates the creation of the world.
The holiest day in the Jewish calendar marking the end of the 10 days of high holidays, where participants fast, attend synagogue, pray, refrain from work and pleasurable activities, and reflect on the past year.
The Hindu Festival of Lights, signifying victory of light over darkness, good over evil, and knowledge over ignorance, celebrated by wearing colourful traditional clothing, lighting homes with lamps, and firework displays.
A vibrant Mexican festival to honour deceased loved ones with traditions such as food, flowers, prayers, visits with family members, and stories about those who have died.
One of the biggest Christian holidays, commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ, celebrated by attending church services, decorating Christmas trees, and sharing meals and gifts with family and friends.
An eight-day Jewish festival of lights celebrating the victory of the Maccabees over the Syrian-Greek army and the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, traditionally lighting one extra candle on each of the eight nights in a hanukkiah.
Celebration of life and culture for African Americans lasting seven days, with ceremonies culminating in a communal feast usually on the sixth day.
If you need any HR support including the creation of an Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) policy, or require employee awareness training in this space, get in touch today to speak with one of our friendly HR experts.