Shawnigan is proud to have at least 32 nationalities currently represented amongst our students and staff. In celebration of our internationalism, we initiated the International Flags Project last school year. Flags from represented countries are displayed on campus and will be flown prominently for each country’s national holiday. Students have also been encouraged to share their nation’s heritage and culture throughout the year with food, music and other traditions. This week we commemorated Mexican Independence Day on September 16 and Nepal’s Constitution Day on September 20.
Two of our Mexican students helped us celebrate Mexican Independence Day on Monday. Isabel M. taught us that this important date celebrates the day in 1810 on which Miguel Hidalgo declared independence from Spain. We learned that this festive holiday is celebrated with fireworks, food, dance and music. “Independence Day is a really important day for all Mexicans; it is a celebration in which our country unites for a whole weekend to celebrate and recognize how amazing and strong our country can be,” said Isabel. Sophie S. then led the whole School in the “Cry of Dolores,” the battle call reenacted by the Mexican president each year. To complete our celebration, the School kitchen team prepared a special Mexican meal for our lunch.
On Friday, Nepalese student Tenzin L. shared a bit of her heritage with us. We learned that Nepal’s new constitution came into effect in 2015, bringing federal unity and equality to a diverse country. “Nepal is a very complex country made up of many traditional cultures, divided into many groups who speak different languages,” explained Tenzin. “The constitution brought many positive changes.” She then shared a special Buddhist prayer, inviting us to join her in praying for “all living beings including ants.”
Thank you Isabel, Sophie and Tenzin! We look forward to celebrating other nations throughout the year.
Shawnigan Lake School is a co-educational boarding school on Vancouver Island in British Columbia. The school is home to nationally-ranked academics, arts and athletics, with 100 per cent of graduates accepted to university.