Markham Stouffville Hospital staff celebrated Markham and Stouffville’s diverse culture with the Second Annual Diversity Fair in May at the hospital.

The Diversity Fair represents the growth of the Markham and Stouffville communities and is the cornerstone of Markham Stouffville Hospital’s inspiration to deliver high-quality programs, services and care in a manner that promotes diversity, equity and inclusion.

This year’s theme was Cultures United: Song and Dance. Attendees participated in an opening ritual honouring First Nations Land, Bollywood dancing and engaged with organizations in the community to break down barriers. Staff also wore cultural-specific outfits.

This is part of Markham Stouffville Hospital’s goal to ensure the organization is inclusive and welcoming to everyone. To recognize that front line staff throughout the hospital is key stakeholders in helping us to achieve a future where everyone who enters our doors feels welcome, included, respected and part of their Markham Stouffville Hospital community.

Jo-anne Marr, CEO of Markham Stouffville Hospital said the goal is to bring people together to celebrate and bring awareness of the importance of diversity.

“The idea of the fair is to bring different people together who think differently by doing so we celebrate our commonalities and differences,” Marr said.

She added Markham Stouffville Hospital has a diversity strategy and that focuses on how to increase awareness of diversity and how to create and bring together a culture of respect.

“Through all these actives within Markham Stouffville Hospital and our communities we will create a more compassionate and more welcoming community and in the long run create a better world for tomorrow,” Marr said.

Mayor Frank Scarpitti who was on hand echoed Marr’s comments saying it is important to have a community, which is one of empathy and understanding.

“A great world is where people stand together not in ignorance and hatred but in understanding and to be accepting of others,” Scarpitti said.