The month of May is the celebration month for Asian-Pacific American Heritage, Jewish American Heritage, and Older Americans Month. That’s a lot to recognize! Here is some information about each of these (in alphabetical order).
Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month is a celebration of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States. A rather broad term, Asian-Pacific encompasses all of the Asian continent and the Pacific islands of Melanesia (New Guinea, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Fiji and the Solomon Islands), Micronesia (Marianas, Guam, Wake Island, Palau, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Nauru and the Federated States of Micronesia) and Polynesia (New Zealand, Hawaiian Islands, Rotuma, Midway Islands, Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, Cook Islands, French Polynesia and Easter Island). The month of May was chosen to commemorate the immigration of the first Japanese to the United States on May 7, 1843, and to mark the anniversary of the completion of the transcontinental railroad on May 10, 1869. The majority of the workers who laid the tracks were Chinese immigrants. Click here to go to the official government website for Asian-Pacific Heritage Month, and don’t forget to go to our homepage for a brief list of suggested reading titles.
Jewish American Heritage Month (JAHM) is a national month of recognition of the more than 350-year history of Jewish contributions to American culture. The JAHM website is a resource for school and community leaders who may wish to use the celebration corridor as a teaching opportunity. JAHM acknowledges the achievements of American Jews in fields ranging from sports and arts and entertainment to medicine, business, science, government, and military service. Click here to go to the official government page for Jewish American Heritage Month, here for even more resources and information, and go to our homepage for a link to an article about the Jewish contribution to the history of Decatur, AL!
Older Americans Month celebrates older adults as a vital part of our society. Since 1963, communities across the country have shown their gratitude by celebrating Older Americans Month each May. The theme of this year’s celebration is “Get into the Act,” to focus on how older adults are taking charge of their health, getting engaged in their communities, and making a positive impact in the lives of others. The theme also reflects on the 50th anniversary of the Older Americans Act. President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Older Americans Act into law in July 1965. Since that time, the Act has provided a nationwide aging services network and funding that helps older adults live with dignity in the communities of their choice for as long as possible. These services include home-delivered and congregate meals, caregiver support, community-based assistance, preventive health services, elder abuse prevention, and much more. Click here to discover Older Americans Month and go to our homepage for a list of books about sassy senior citizens of the world! You can also contact your local Area Agency on Aging office by visiting www.eldercare.gov or calling 1-800- 677-1116 to find ongoing opportunities to celebrate and support older Americans. Find out about senior services in our area by clicking here.