Cultural Considerations: Holiday Season

It’s December, and with that comes the holiday season! Throughout this season, many CASA programs will be upping their recruitment, awareness and fundraising efforts.

As an organization working to expand our diversity and inclusion efforts, it is important to be mindful of the many diverse holidays celebrated during this time. To be clear: It is perfectly fine, and encouraged, for your program to recognize and message around Christmas. While many of us celebrate Christmas, however, let’s also acknowledge other holidays alongside our neighbors and friends as we ramp up our messaging this holiday season.

It’s encouraged that if you are using social media or any other messaging to wish people a Merry Christmas, that you also acknowledge other holidays observed by other faiths and cultures. A good reference for holiday messaging is our social media calendars, which include greetings for Kwanzaa, Christmas, Hanukkah and Día de los Reyes.

Another easy way to be inclusive, especially when your message is appealing to the general public, is to use the general term “holiday.” For example, if your CASA program is running a toy drive, instead of calling it a “Christmas Toy Drive” consider calling it a “Holiday Toy Drive” so that people of all faiths, cultures and religions feel welcomed and included. If you’re hosting a recruitment booth, wish those who visit your booth a “Happy Holidays!” rather than a “Merry Christmas!” By using the general term “holiday,” we can allow others to feel included and welcomed in our movement, as opposed to the exclusion they may feel if we only recognize Christmas. Other examples of good times for general holiday greetings are your program’s newsletter, December fundraisers and other events. For an example of general holiday messaging, check out our December media release template.

Texas CASA is committed to our goal of ensuring the highest quality advocacy possible for all children in the child protection system, regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, expression, or disability status – that’s why we are highlighting resources to support the CASA network’s journey to becoming more inclusive, welcoming, affirming and culturally considerate. Explore more Cultural Considerations articles.