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Yearly Calendar of Cultural Celebrations

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As part of the children’s program, it’s important to undertake cultural celebrations in acknowledging rights and traditions. This yearly calendar has a variety of monthly cultural and community celebrations which can be acknowledged within the program and adapted to suit the needs of the children and their families within the service.

When selecting festivals or religious celebrations it’s important to choose those that are relevant to the children and families within the setting and that enable children to become aware of each other’s cultures.

January

  • 1
    New Year’s Public Holiday Day

  • 1
    Veganuary - is a non-profit organisation that encourages people worldwide to try vegan for January and beyond.

  • 11
    Girl Hug Boy Day - Celebrate the power of hugs

  • 12
    Earth Chakra Day - International Earth Chakra Day (12 Jan) is an annual event dedicated to raising awareness about Planetary Ascension and Cosmic Consciousness around the world

  • 17
    Kid Inventor’s Day - A day to encourage all the children in your life to think outside the box and invent something.

  • 20
    Penguin Awareness Day - To celebrate and commemorate these fascinating flightless birds which are loved by people all over the world.

  • 26
    Australia Day - Is a day to celebrate the past, present and future of the country. It is a commemoration of the day that the First Fleet landed in Sydney Cove in 1788, as well as a celebration of all the achievements of our country. At its core, Australia Day is driven by communities who celebrate everything they love about living in Australia and about being an Australian.

  • 26
    Invasion Day / Survival Day
    The refusal to celebrate Australia Day is part of an ongoing fight for the recognition of the abuse of Indigenous people's rights.

February

  • 1
    RedFEB
    Honour those close to your heart. Raise money for life-saving research, raise awareness for heart disease and help keep families together for longer. Getting involved is as simple as wearing red and donating. 

  • 6
    Waitangi Day (NZ) - Celebrating the signing of the Waitangi Treaty in 1840 at the home of James Busby at Waitangi. 

  • 8
    Magha Puja Day (Buddhism) - Commemorates a time when 1,250 Buddhists spontaneously came together to pay their respect to the Buddha. 

  • 12
    Lunar New Year - It's the first day of the New Year in the Chinese lunisolar calendar (Chinese traditional calendar). 

  • 16
    Anniversary of Apology - This event marks the anniversary of the Apology to Australia’s Indigenous peoples in the House of Representatives on 13 February 2008 by former Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, apologising for past laws, policies and practices that have impacted on Australia’s First Nations Peoples.

  • 14
    Valentine’s Day - is the day when St. Valentine died within his jail confinement. Before his death, St. Valentine experienced published a letter to some girl whom he adored very much. He ended up his letter together with his last wordings that is “From Your Valentine” in addition to his signature 

  • 14
    Sweetheart Day - The primary aim of raising much-needed awareness of congenital and childhood acquired heart disease.

  • 16
    Pancake Tuesday - Pancake Day (Shrove Tuesday) Pancake Day is a day that is celebrated on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, also known as Shrove Tuesday. This day has been associated with consuming fatty and rich foods that one couldn’t normally eat during Lent.

  • 21
    International Mother Language Day - Is a day the celebrates and honours diversity in the languages of the world and to promote cultural and linguistic diversity.

March

  • 1
    World Compliment Day - Give someone a genuine compliment today

  • 1-31 
    Bandaged Bear Appeal - Organisation: The Royal Children's Hospital Westmead
    The Bandaged Bear Appeal is The Children's Hospital at Westmead's largest annual fundraising appeal. Treating 100,000 patients every year, The Children's Hospital at Westmead relies on community generosity to raise essential funds for purchasing the most technologically advanced medical equipment, conducting vital research and maintaining the total healing 

  • 7
    Clean Up Australia Day - A day of environmental action. It encourages Australian citizens to clean up, fix up and conserve their communities to benefit the environment. 

  • 8
    UN International Women’s Day - To celebrate, educate, and empower women and girls worldwide

  • 16
    National Close the Gap Day - a time for all Australians to come together and commit to achieving health equality for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. 

  • 17
    St Patrick’s Day - Marks the death date of Saint Patrick who is the patron saint of Ireland. 

  • 19
    Red Nose Day - Red Nose Australia was founded in 1977 by bereaved parents who wanted to make sure the devastating impact of the death of their child never happened to anyone else – by finding out why their babies died suddenly and unexpectedly and then educating parents and health professionals about how to prevent it. 

  • 20
    International Day of Happiness - Its purpose is to bring focus to what the United Nations consider to be the ultimate goals of humankind, which are happiness, freedom and wellbeing, and these should be the purpose of every nation. 

  • 21
    Harmony Day - A day to celebrate Australian multiculturalism, based on the successful integration of migrants into our community. 

  • 28 – 29
    Holi (India) - Also called the festival of sharing and love or the festival of colours is a Hindu two day festival in the Spring.

April

  • 2
    Good Friday Public Holiday Day 

  • 4
    Easter Sunday 

  • 5
    Easter Monday Public Holiday Day

  • 8
    Hana Matsuri (Buddhism) - The floral Festival of Japan, Hana-Matsuri, is a religious holiday that symbols Buddha’s birthday.

  • 12
    Ramadan begins

  • 14
    Baisakhi-Sikh - For the entire Sikh community around the world, this is one day that reminds us of the anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh. This special day is considered to be a form of good luck and so generally try to commence new thoughts, lives and commitments on this day. 

  • 22
    Earth Day - An annual event to support environmental protection. It begins in the United States in the year 1970 as a contradiction to the harmful effects of industrial expansion on the environment.

  • 25
    ANZAC Day - Is the solemn day of remembrance of those Australian and New Zealand Army Corps soldiers who have fought and died for their country. 

  • 26
    ANZAC Public Holiday Day

  • 26
    Nature Play Week Starts - Focuses entirely on sharing inspiring, simple ideas for local nature play.

May

  • 9
    Mother’s Day - A time to honor mothers, grandmothers, and great-grandmothers for their contribution to family and society.

  • 12
    Ramadan ends

  • 12
    Eid al-Fitr

  • 15
    International Day of Families - It highlights the importance of family in society If we have stronger families, we will have stronger schools and stronger communities. A strong family unit can help each member feel more fulfilled and better about themselves and the world.

  • 19
    National Simultaneous Storytime - A colourful, vibrant, fun event that aims to promote the value of reading and literacy, using an Australian children's book that explores age-appropriate themes, and addresses key learning areas of the National Curriculum for Foundation to Year 6.

  • 20
    Outdoor Classroom Day - Outdoor Classroom Day is a global movement to make time outdoors part of every child’s day. On two days of action each year, teachers take children outdoors to play and learn. All year-round, the Outdoor Classroom Day community campaigns for more time outdoors every day.

  • 26 
    National Sorry Day - National Sorry Day is a special day that occurs in Australia on 26th May every year. It is a day of remembrance and commemoration held to highlight the impact of past policies of forcible removal on the Stolen Generations, their families, and their communities.

  • 27 - 3 June
    National Reconciliation Week - a journey for all Australians - as individuals, families, communities, organisations and importantly as a nation. At the heart of this journey are relationships between the broader Australian community and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

June

  • 3
    Mabo Day - Mabo Day commemorates Eddie Koiki Mabo and his decade-long effort to make the Australian Government officially recognise that his people own Mer Island. On 3 June 1992, the High Court of Australia acknowledged that Mabo and his people had traditional land ownership agreements and that it was up to the people of Mer Island to determine who owned land today.

  • 5
    World Environment Day - A flagship campaign for raising awareness on environmental issues emerging from human overpopulation, global warming, and marine pollution, to wildlife crime and sustainable consumption. 

  • 8
    World Oceans Day - The United Nations day for celebrating the role of the oceans in our everyday life and inspiring action to protect the ocean and sustainably use marine resources. 

  • 14
    Queen’s Birthday (not in WA or QLD) Public Holiday Day 

  • 15
    National Buddy Day - Created to show the importance of friendship and raise awareness of bullying amongst primary school children.

July

  • 4
    NAIDOC Week - to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

  • 20 –23
    Eid al-Adha 

  • 23
    National Pyjama Day - To help raise vital funds for children in foster care.

  • 23
    Tokyo Olympics begin

  • 24
    Asalha Puja Day (Buddhism)

  • 26
    Crazy Hair Day - Crazy Hair Day is a day to go crazy with your hair - teased, coloured, gelled or twisted; wigs and scarves, punk or just plain messy! is an annual fundraising event organised by Cystic Fibrosis Victoria (CFV).

  • 29
    OOSH Educators Day - Recognises and celebrates the work of Australia's OOSH educators for their wonderful contribution of the school children in their care.

August

  • 3 - 9
    Dental Health Week - Is the Australian Dental Association’s major annual oral health promotion campaign. Its aim is to educate Australians about the importance of maintaining good oral health in every aspect of their lives.

  • 4
    National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day - A time to for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families to celebrate the strengths and culture of their children 

  • 7
    Jeans for Genes Day - The charity's mission is to support families and children with birth defects or incurable genetic diseases. The day encourages children and teachers to join in with fundraising by wearing jeans and casualwear to school.

  • 14 - 22
    National Science Week - provides the opportunity for community participation in high profile science engagement activities across the nation. The objectives of the grant opportunity are to:

  • 21 - 27
    Book week - s an annual celebration of reading for pleasure for children of primary school age. A fantastic opportunity for extended teaching o n any of your favourite children's books!

  • 28
    Daffodil Day - is Cancer Council’s most iconic and much-loved annual campaign that raises life-saving funds for world-class cancer research. It’s a time of hope; where we come together to show our support.

September

  • 1
    Early Childhood Educators’ Day - Recognises and celebrates the work of Australia's educators in early learning services for their wonderful contribution to the wellbeing and healthy development of the young children in their care.

  • 1
    Indigenous Literacy Day – Attention to the disadvantages experienced in remote communities and encourage the rest of Australia to raise funds and advocate for more equal access to literacy resources for remote communities.

  • 5
    Father’s Day- Showing appreciation for fathers or father figures.

  • 8
    International Literacy Day - raise awareness and concern for literacy problems that exist within our own local communities as well as globally.

  • 9
    RU OK? Day - A national day of action when we remind Australians that every day is the day to ask, “Are you OK?” if someone in your world is struggling with life’s ups and downs.

October

  • 1
    World Smile Day - a day when people are encouraged to not only put a smile on the faces of their fellow man, but also to treat them to acts of kindness 

  • 4 - 10
    World Space Week - To celebrate each year at the international level the contributions of space science and technology to the betterment of the human condition

  • 12 - 17
    Superhero week - National Superhero Week for Muscular Dystrophy, proudly supported by PJ Masks, is a week-long event in which people across Australia dress up as their favourite superhero to raise money for Muscular Dystrophy Australia’s programs, services and research. 

  • 24 - 30
    National Children’s Week - Children’s Week is a national celebration of children’s rights, talents and citizenship held on the fourth Wednesday of October in Australia to coincide with Universal Children’s Day

  • 29
    Day For Daniel - Is Australia’s largest day of action to raise awareness of child safety, protection, and harm prevention.
  •  31
    National Grandparent’s Day - NSW Grandparents Day celebrates the contributions grandparents make to their families and communities. The campaign recognises the diversity of grandparent relationships across age groups, cultural backgrounds, and geographical locations.

  • 31
    Halloween - Halloween also referred to as Allhalloween, All Hallows' Eve, or All Saints' Eve is celebrated yearly on October 31, the eve of the Western Christian feast of All Hallows' Day or more commonly known as All Saints' Day. Halloween day is in celebration and remembrance of the dead.

November

  • 2
    Melbourne Cup Day - - The Melbourne Cup is the premier event of the Spring Racing Carnival

  • 4
    Diwali - Diwali is a five-day festival that straddles the new moon. Though widely celebrated across all of India, the days may have different names and have additional meanings in some parts of India, there is enough commonality to briefly describe each of the days: Dhanteras marks the beginning of the five-day festivities of Diwali. 

  • 8 - 14
    National Recycling Week Starts - provides an important opportunity for councils, workplaces, schools and individuals to improve their recycling knowledge, build better recycling habits and build trust in recycling. 

  • 16 - 21
    Road Safety Week - The week highlights the impact of road trauma and ways to reduce it.

  • 11
    Remembrance Day - was meant to specifically honour the heroes and fallen of World War I, but today, it is aimed at honouring all soldiers who fought and died for their country in years gone by. 

  • 20
    Universal Children’s Day - The goal of Universal Children’s day is to improve child welfare worldwide, promote and celebrate children’s rights and promote togetherness and awareness amongst all children.

December

  • 24
    Christmas Eve

  • 25
    Christmas Day

  • 26
    Boxing Day

  • 31
    New Year's Eve

This calendar represents a snapshot of the main cultural and community events celebrated by Australia's diverse population. It does not include the celebrations of all cultural groups or community and please keep in mind some of the dates are subject to change. 

Honouring cultural diversity and awareness through celebrations and experiences requires commitment and respect for being and belonging in the world. “Educators honour the histories, cultures, language, traditions child-rearing practices and lifestyle choices of families”.

Note: Please make sure to like/follow our Aussie Childcare Network Facebook page in order to receive events and celebration activity ideas, resources and documentation templates for child portfolios. Also on the 01 of each month, we will be releasing a monthly calendar of events.This should help you to plan and organise for upcoming events and celebrations for the specific month. 

Last modified on Wednesday, December 30, 2020
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