Larkspur is the traditional flower of July.

July 2019 Cultural Diversity Review

Cultural Diversity

This year, July is a relatively quiet month for international holidays. That’s not to say there aren’t any interesting holidays or festivals taking place. In fact, July can be considered the most revolutionary of months with 25 independence holidays taking place around the world, more than any other month.

In most cases, these independence days are the national days of the countries, and a great chance to celebrate the culture and heritage of those nations. The list of national days in July is shown below.

Month info: The name was chosen by Augustus to honor Julius Caesar, who was born in July. The month was previously known as Quintilis – meaning fifth month. The month was pronounced in English as ‘Julie’ until the eighteenth century. In other languages, the month retains this pronunciation.

Featured Holiday

July 4: US Independence Day

On July 4th 1776, the United States of America proclaimed its independence from England by adopting the Declaration of Independence.

While the signing of the Declaration itself was not completed until August, the Fourth of July holiday is seen as the official anniversary of U.S. independence.

As this is a Federal holiday, not only will schools and libraries be closed. Most federal and state offices will also be closed and there will be no mail deliveries on Independence Day.

Continue reading

Independence Day Facts

  • The Declaration of Independence was signed by only two people on July 4th 1776 – John Hancock and Charles Thomson. Most added their signatures on August 2 1776
  • 56 people signed the Declaration of Independence. Thomas Jefferson wrote the majority of it.
  • Charles Carroll, who represented Maryland, was the last surviving signer of the Declaration. He died in 1832 at the age of 95
  • The two future presidents who signed, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, both died on the 50th anniversary of signing the Declaration in 1826.
  • John Hancock, president of the Second Continental Congress, signed the declaration first but his signature was so large it left little room for the others. The term “John Hancock” is still used as a slang term for a signature in the US today.

Continue Reading

Notable holidays in July 2019

July 11 – 15: Mongolian Naadam Festival

The Naadam Festival is a celebrated in Mongolia with public holidays from July 11 – 15 each year. This is the largest and most popular holiday in Mongolia. The first day of the festival takes place on Revolution Day, Mongolia’s National Day, which commemorates independence from China on 11 July 1921.

During the Naadam Festival, Mongolians participate in the “Three Manly Games” of archery, wrestling and horseback riding which represent the heritage of the nation.

The festival originated in the 12th century as a way for Mongolians to demonstrate their military prowess. From the 17th century, Naadam contests were held during religious holidays. Since 1922, they have been held on Revolution Day, the anniversary of the People’s Revolution.

Continue Reading

July 14: Bastille Day

Technically the holiday marks the Fête de la Fédération of the July 14th 1790, which was a huge feast and event to celebrate the establishment of a constitutional monarchy in France. However the holiday is usually seen as a celebration of the storming of the Bastille.

After years of misrule by the Monarchy, the French people had finally united in a popular uprising in an effort to take control of their own country.

On July 14th 1789 the people of Paris banded together to march on the Bastille, 14th century medieval fortress that became a state prison. It was used by the King to imprison his opponents, often without trial.

The storming of the prison marked the beginning of the French Revolution.

Continue Reading

July 15: Japanese Marine Day

Marine Day, also known as Ocean Day, Sea Day or ‘Umi no hi’ only became a nationally recognized holiday in Japan in 1996.

Before 1996, it was known as Marine Memorial Day, and was not a national holiday.

Marine Memorial Day was established in 1941 to mark the anniversary of the 1876 return of the Meiji Emperor to the Port of Yokohama, on the two-masted topsail schooner Meiji-Maru, from a tour of the Tohoku and Hokkaido regions.

The day was also established as a holiday to express gratitude for the gifts of the sea, honour its importance, and pray for the prosperity of Japan as a maritime nation.

Continue Reading

July 21: Belgian National Day

Belgium had been part of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands since 1815, but the majority of the population were Roman Catholic and increasingly felt the rule of King William I favoured the Northern protestants.

In August 1830, riots led to a wider uprising and calls for Belgium to succeed from the Netherlands. A London Conference of major European powers then recognized Belgian independence.

After Belgium asserted its independence from the Netherlands on 4th October 1830, the Belgian National Congress asked Leopold I of Saxe-Coburg to become king of the newly formed country. Leopold accepted and was proclaimed “King of the Belgians” on June 26th 1831. He swore allegiance to the constitution in the Royal Palace in Brussels on July 21st 1831.

Continue Reading

National Days in July

34 countries have their national days in July. How many people in the company do you know from each country? Remember to wish them a happy national day!

Jul 01 BurundiIndependence Day: Independence from Belgium in 1962
Jul 01 CanadaCanada Day: Marks the union of the British North America provinces under the name of Canada in 1867
Jul 01 Cayman IslandsConstitution Day: 1st Monday in July
Jul 01 Hong KongHKSAR Day: Transfer of sovereignty to the PRC 1997
Jul 01 RwandaIndependence Day: Independence from Belgium in 1962
Jul 01 SomaliaIndependence Day: Foundation of the Republic, from Italy and the formation of Somali Republic in 1960
Jul 01 British Virgin IslandsTerritory Day: Celebrates becoming a self-governing colony in 1956
Jul 03 BelarusIndependence Day: Marks the liberation of Minsk in 1944
Jul 04 United StatesIndependence Day: Marks the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776
Jul 05 Cape VerdeIndependence Day: Marks independence from Portugal on 5 July 1975
Jul 05 Isle of ManTynwald Day: Tynwald (parliament) annual meeting. July 5 or next weekday.
Jul 05 VenezuelaIndependence Day: Signing of the Venezuelan Declaration of Independence in 1811
Jul 06 ComorosNational Day: Independence from France 1975
Jul 06 MalawiIndependence Day: Independence from the United Kingdom in 1964
Jul 07 Solomon IslandsIndependence Day: Independence from the UK in 1978
Jul 09 PalauConstitution Day: In 1981, the constitution of Palau gave the world its first nuclear-free constitution.
Jul 09 South SudanIndependence Day: South Sudan gained independence from Sudan in July 2011
Jul 10 BahamasIndependence Day: Independence from the United Kingdom in 1973
Jul 11 MongoliaNaadam Holiday: Declaration of independence from China 1921
Jul 12 KiribatiIndependence Day: Independence from the United Kingdom in 1979
Jul 12 São Tomé and PríncipeIndependence Day: Independence from Portugal 1975
Jul 13 MontenegroStatehood Day: Recognised as independent at the Congress of Berlin 1878
Jul 14 FranceBastille Day: Fête de la Fédération. Bastille Day, 14 July 1789
Jul 14 French GuianaBastille Day: Fête de la Fédération. Bastille Day, 14 July 1789
Jul 20 ColombiaIndependence Day: Declaration of independence from Spain 1810
Jul 21 BelgiumIndependence Day: Leopold of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld takes the oath as first king of the Belgians in 1831
Jul 21 GuamLiberation Day: Americans landing on Guam 1944, the beginning of the Battle of Guam
Jul 23 EgyptRevolution Day: The revolution of 1952
Jul 25 Puerto RicoConstitution Day: Establishment of Commonwealth of Puerto Rico 1952
Jul 26 LiberiaIndependence Day: Proclamation of the Republic: independence from the United States 1847
Jul 28 PeruIndependence Day: Declaration of independence from Spain in 1821
Jul 29 Faroe IslandsSaint Olav’s Day: Ólavsøka. Saint Olaf’s death at the Battle of Stiklestad in 1030
Jul 30 VanuatuIndependence Day: Independence from the United Kingdom and France in 1980

Observances in July 2019

Throughout the month, there are days set aside to observe all sorts of events, some serious and some not so serious. These days can provide interesting ways to engage employees in diversity issues. The table below shows a selection of these days with some ideas how you could use them within your organisation.

11th All American Pet Photo DayPost a picture of your pet on the intranet
11th World Population Day  Quiz: Which are the biggest countries that your company operates in?
15th National Ice Cream DayPoll: Favorite ice cream flavor
18th Nelson Mandela International DayDiscussion: what were you doing on the day Nelson Mandela was freed?
22nd National Parent’s DayPoll: What percentage of employees have children?
23rd National Hot Dog DayHot Dogs on the staff canteen menu?
30th International Day of Friendship  Discussion: How has working with colleagues from around the world helped widen your view on life?