We would like to wish all our colleagues, patients and visitors who are celebrating, a very happy Diwali!
For millions of Hindus, Sikhs and Jains across the world, Diwali - the festival of lights - celebrates new beginnings and the triumph of good over evil, and light over darkness.
This year Diwali takes place from Monday 24 October. Traditionally, the festival involves visits to temples and gurdwaras, huge firework displays, parties and families getting together in their homes.
Diwali is a very important celebration for our Hindu, Sikh and Jain staff members, so to find out more, we had a chat with Neeta Pattni, Patient Experience Facilitator - North Central Division to find out what Diwali means to her.
What does Diwali mean to our staff?
Neeta said: “For as far back as I can remember, Diwali has been one of my favourite festivals. The anticipation of something good coming, prayers filled with joy and hope, decorating our home, lighting lamps, making beautiful rangoli patterns, eating delicious sweets, and gathering of friends and family.
“Being born and brought up in the UK, our celebrations were very contained within our families, as we did not have an entire community to celebrate with, but my mum tried her best to keep the culture alive within us by telling us stories about Diwali. Today, with my own children - it is a very different picture. It has become much easier to celebrate and keep the flame of Diwali alive in our everyday lives.
“For me, the lights of Diwali symbolise faith and courage - the flame that burned in Sita in her blackest and bleakest times, today burns in every woman and empowers us to fight against injustice. Diwali for me is a time to reflect to ensure that flame never dies but burns away my shortcomings and helps me focus on the light and all that it symbolises - gestures of goodwill and kindness and as a reminder to be kind to myself.
Pass the light on!”
Message from our Race Equality Network Executive Sponsor
Elizabeth Hale, Director of Improvement and executive sponsor of the Race Equality Network has also recorded a special message for those celebrating.
In her message, Elizabeth said: “Hello everybody, I would like to take this opportunity to wish a very happy Diwali to all our colleagues, patients and visitors.
"This year more than ever, it’s really important to try and some time and have a break and spend some time with friends, family and loved ones. I'd like to give a particular thank you to those colleagues who are celebrating and working today – we really appreciate everything you do to keep our patients safe. Thank you again to everyone and have a wonderful Diwali.”