Diwali, a festival of lights, is the most celebrated festival by Indians all over the world. The word “Diwali” is derived from the Sanskrit term “deepavali,” which translates to “rows of lamps.” Diwali has been a celebrated at BCBSNE for years and seems to only grow in popularity.

“Our office culture reflects shared values,” Scott Haag, director of talent acquisition and member of our Diversity and Inclusion Business Council (DIBC) said. “We value diversity because it helps to create a better company for our employees that translates into the best experience for our customers.”

To reinforce the value of diversity and inclusion in the workplace, we count on the DIBC which is comprised of 25 employees with diverse backgrounds from different areas of the organization. The DIBC keeps our company committed to attracting, retaining and advancing a diverse and fully engaged workforce through an inclusive environment that encompasses all cultures, backgrounds and perspectives.

The Diwali celebration is just one of the ways employees are introduced to other cultures. In the Indian culture it’s important to Hindus as Christmas is to Christians, and it marks the start of a new financial year for Indian businesses worldwide.

“Everyone is able to participate in some way, either by dressing up in traditional outfits borrowed from their friends, getting a henna tattoo, trying to guess the names of the various spices in jars used in Indian cooking, or eating some Indian food,” Haag said. “There are many ways for anyone to get involved as little or as much as they want to, and it’s really inspiring to see how so many people get behind it.”

With a festival that signifies victory of light over darkness, knowledge over ignorance, good over evil and hope over despair, it’s not hard to appreciate it and want to be involved in it.