(Image source: www.theguardian.com)

May 21, 2016, marked World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development.

Proceeding UNESCO's Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity in November 2001, the General Assembly of the United Nations announced May 21 as World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development.

"Affirming that respect for the diversity of cultures, tolerance, dialogue and cooperation, in a climate of mutual trust and understanding are the best guarantees of international peace and security."
(UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity)

We are encouraged to develop a deeper understanding of the values of cultural diversity and to engage with others of diverse backgrounds to learn to live together harmoniously.

Three-quarters of the world's major conflicts have a cultural dimension.
(unaoc.org)

This year UNESCO invited everyone to join the "Do ONE thing for Diversity and Inclusion" campaign. Suggesting small, personal changes can reform communities and encourage cultural diversity.

Here at RMCC, we implement programs assisting children of refugee and migrant backgrounds who are encountering disadvantage. The foundation offers Learning Support programs, Life Skill workshops and provide essential education material.

What is the one thing you can do on an ongoing basis to have universal success in the plight against racism and exclusion?

How you can do ONE thing for Diversity and Inclusion:

1. Visit an art exhibit or museum dedicated to other cultures.
2. Volunteer with an organisation working towards diversity and inclusion (volunteer with us at RMCC)!
3. Read about different religions and cultures.
4. Engage with work colleagues of different cultural backgrounds.
5. Encourage friends and loved ones to do the same.

Investing time to learn about other cultures and engage with others of diverse backgrounds does not to suggest a requirement to compare and judge, but rather to contemplate different ideas and beliefs.

In the words of one wise philosopher,
“It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it” - Aristotle.

Words by Lucy Davidson