Haitian Heritage Month celebration is an expansion of the Haitian Flag Day, a major patriotic day celebration in Haiti and the Diaspora. May is to celebrate the rich culture and for Haitians all over the world to enrich and spread awareness. The month of May carries a number of significant historical and cultural traditions that Haitians are proud to make aware of and to pass on to future generations. Reference to our calendar for a list of the historic dates and explanations per day.
It was coined as an official commemoration to the fallen soldiers who helped the United States and many other Western colonized countries gain their freedom and independence. May reminds Haitians of the historic pact signed by the Black and Mulatto officers at the May 1803's congress. As a result, those officers created the Haitian Flag on the last day of the congress, on May 18, 1803. And, under that flag, they fought and expelled the French army, so Haiti became the first Black independent country in the world on January 1st, 1804.
It was documented to be celebrated in the U.S. in the early 1990s, Boston, MA; Connecticut; Florida. Since then, many other locations around the U.S. have celebrated the raising of the Haitian flag in honor of the culture. Boston has respectfully celebrated the entire month of May with a series of programs on Haitian history, culture, and contributions to the world. The month-long celebration has continued with such activities as parades, flag raisings, and exhibits in collaborations with several Haitian organizations in the New England area.
The Haitian community of Palm Beach County, Florida which started the Heritage celebration in 2001, contributed greatly to make the Heritage Month first a statewide celebration. After a serious of attempt to get recognized on a national level, Former President George W. Bush and his wife sent a letter in May 2005 to congratulate the Haitian-American community for the heritage month and organized a celebration at the White House the same year.
Since 2008, there's been an increase in the different states that has the Haitian Heritage Month/Flag Day is celebrated with parades, festivals, school activities, and flag-raising ceremonies across the U.S. and is continuing to grow.
The Haitian American Collaborative has been celebrating the Haitian Heritage Month since 2014. Celebrating with a calendar of festivities, Flag raisings, parades, festivals, art shows just to name a few and in collaboration with other organizations in hopes of pushing the culture.
Let us celebrate our heritage with pride and dignity regardless of our differences in order to promote and share our culture. Our heritage is significant for all of us as well as other ethnic groups within the Caribbean community in the United States and throughout the world. As Dr. Carruthers stated, Haitian was the “Irritated Genie” that avenged the atrocities that were committed against all African people.
Former President Estime wanted to commemorate annually the creation of the Haitian Flag Day on May 18 to encourage the development of patriotic sentiments among Haitian youth.
Since the '90s, several governors, members of state senates and house representatives, mayors and city councilors have issued annual citations and proclamations, recognizing the Haitian Heritage Month celebration in their states &/or cities.
In Haiti, May 1 is celebrated as Labor and Agriculture Day. May 2 used to be Flower Day. The Congress of Arcahaie that united black and mulatto officers to fight together for Haiti's independence is remembered from May 15 through 18. The revolutionary general, Toussaint Louverture, was born on May 20, 1743. Teacher's Day is May 17, University Day May 18, and Mother's Day is celebrated on the last Sunday of May.
Now we celebrate Ayiti's history throughout the world, one of the famous traditions during Flag weekend down in Florida is Kompa Fest 40 years and counting. Massachusets, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Illinois & Georgia with annual parades and festivities to acknowledge the culture and being recognized by City officials.
If you're an individual or organization that has some interest in bringing awareness to your state or town? We have a process in place to help assist you not only to have a successful Flag Raising Ceremony but a month-long agenda to celebrate with the rest of the world.