Virtual International Day highlights cultural traditions of our diverse student body

Cultural Attire Contest Submission

With everyone at Trinity College School continuing to learn online at this time, members of the Cultural Awareness Group worked hard to highlight our diverse school community through virtual International Day initiatives on Wednesday, May 5th.

In morning advisor meetings, Senior School students had the chance to experience different cultures through videos and a slideshow presentation, in the hopes that this would inspire understanding and conversation about the many cultures represented at TCS.

Students watched a video put together by the Caribbean Council leaders, who hail from a variety of locations – U.S. Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Antigua and Bahamas. They highlighted the customs, food and folklore of the islands, from their love of salt fish to the legend behind the moko jumbie dancers seen at events, all set to some wonderful Caribbean music!

Then, students viewed the official International Day video, which included CAG members from areas including Hong Kong, Vietnam, Laos, Japan, India, Saudi Arabia and China talking about some of the differences between their home regions and Canada, and their favourite foods and traditions from home (our students really love their food!). They also spoke about challenges their countries are facing, such as the impact of COVID-19 and environmental issues, and shared reasons why people should come to visit their home regions.

To replicate the traditional parade of nations held during a typical International Day on campus, CAG created a slideshow of students wearing cultural clothing from this and previous years. Students were able to vote on their favourite submissions in various categories such as “most colourful” and “most creative.”

This year, International Day also happened on the same day as Cinco de Mayo. Not to be confused with Mexican Independence Day, Cinco de Mayo (translated literally as May 5th) celebrates the victory by the Mexican army over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War in 1862. While a minor holiday in Mexico, elsewhere the day has come to be a chance to celebrate Mexican culture.

International Day also falls during Asian Heritage Month this year, and CAG members are looking forward to ways to honour this occasion, raising awareness of Asian and Pacific Islander culture. Events include a virtual guest speaker presentation on May 19th, featuring Old Girl Thanh Vu ’08 (an ultramarathon runner from Vietnam), and an online movie and discussion hosted by CAG and Trinity Students for Social Justice on May 13th.

Thank you to the dedicated members of CAG who are working to build empathy and understanding within our diverse school community at TCS.