If you happened to be in the Philippines over the holidays, you would have seen parols everywhere. As early as November, these multi-colored lanterns start to appear in homes, offices, malls, restaurants and lining the streets. If you weren’t in the Philippines but still saw a large silver and purple parol, chances are you were at Alexandria Hospital on the ICU unit. It certainly caught my eye when I was rounding a few weeks ago. In fact, there was an entire display of holiday traditions from around the globe including Christmas, Hanukah, Kwanzaa and Three Kings Day.
It all began with Denise Clarke, an ICU nurse who was also intrigued by the beauty of the parol that was brought in for a holiday party. Where some might see an opportunity to shy away from a religious decoration in the office, Denise, who is also on the morale team, saw an opportunity. After the party, she hung the star front and center at the nurses station and built an entire display including as many different cultures as she could find, making sure to include every tradition represented by her colleagues. She felt that it was a great way to celebrate, to make people aware and to allow others to celebrate traditions from their homelands. Diversity opens minds by combining many different viewpoints, increases our understanding of a variety of lifestyles and enriches our experiences. Thank you, Denise, for going above and beyond in bringing us together in a different kind of a OneInova celebration.