Halloween is new to the recently arrived immigrants and can be an exciting experience. Church World Service staff and clients found their own unique ways to celebrate this holiday. Last week, the CWS North California office hosted a delightful afternoon of Halloween festivities, and the activity was all about fun and flexibility. Participants could drop by at any time, bring their own food or simply indulge in the delicious desserts including pumpkin pies, colorful cupcakes and candies provided by mostly CWS North California staff.
During the party people donned their favorite costumes, but one standout was CWS North California’s Senior Paralegal, Shushma. Dressed in striking purple and black, she embodied the character Ursula from Disney’s The Little Mermaid. Shushma, embracing her love for villainous personas, shared, “I like the villain character.” Shushma joined CWS Northern California office in May 2023.
By 3 PM, the much-anticipated Best Costume Competition, organized by the CWS North California office, commenced. Shushma’s Ursula ensemble, complemented by her husband’s creative addition of a tiara and shell necklace, undoubtedly captured the attention of everyone present, earning her a spot among the top contenders.
The festivities also featured spooky storytelling and Shushma at first was a bit hesitant., “I was like, no, I can’t get involved in telling spooky stories. I’m from Nepal, I never celebrated Halloween.” However, as the tales unfolded, the mood shifted. She candidly admitted, “Then I did not really feel weird, I actually enjoyed it.”
But the culinary aspect of the event was a big highlight as well. The spread included an assortment of snacks, cake and a delectable pumpkin pie, which received high praise. “I enjoyed the pumpkin pie,” said Shushma.
What started as a Halloween gathering transcended the typical Halloween experience. It transformed into a fantastic social event, with friends and colleagues bonding and having a blast. Shushma believes that every new American should embrace this unique and enjoyable tradition, and it’s more than just Halloween; it’s about experiencing the joy of it.
This Halloween event also fostered a sense of unity, bringing together diverse communities from around the world and at our CWS offices across the country we make sure such events are also fun activities to our newly arrived communities.
To learn more about the CWS Northern California office, visit their website.