AL DHAFRA AIR BASE, United Arab Emirates --
Airmen from the 380th Air Expeditionary Wing and Cultural Heritage Committee collaborated to organize an International Heritage Night on September 2, 2022, at Al Dhafra Air Base, United Arab Emirates. The event welcomed more than 200 service members and civilians to explore the diverse cultural backgrounds that make up the 380th AEW.
The event kicked off with a hula performance lead by Staff Sgt. Owen Kawaihalau-Delena, an aerospace ground equipment craftsman assigned to the 380th Expeditionary Maintenance Squadron. Airmen were then given an “international passport” which guided their journey to various booths, representing 11 unique cultures from around the world and within the United States.
The intent of the event was to give Airmen who felt under represented, the opportunity to represent themselves and share the food, games, stories and other highlights of their own cultures.
“We have events like Asian American Pacific Islander, Hispanic Heritage, Juneteenth, etc., but that doesn’t target the whole spectrum of diversity,” said Senior Airman Joana Galang, a traffic management specialist assigned to the 380th Expeditionary Logistics Readiness Squadron, who is the head of the International Heritage Night Committee. “It's meant to celebrate the many cultures of ADAB and to display our diversity and inclusion of people from all walks of life.”
The United States Air Force strives to fully and inclusively leverage our nation’s greatest strength—it’s diverse people. The diversity of background, experience, demographics and perspective is invaluable to successfully navigate an increasingly competitive and dynamic global environment.