November is Native American Heritage Month. The month is a time to celebrate rich and diverse cultures, traditions, and histories and to acknowledge the important contributions of native tribes in Orange County and indigenous people worldwide. Native American Heritage Month is also a good time to learn about tribes and raise awareness about the unique challenges Native Americans have faced, both historically and in the present, as well as the ways in which tribal citizens have worked to conquer these challenges.
The original inhabitants of Orange County and the surrounding areas are the Gabrieleño (or Gabrielino) Indians and the Juaneño Indians. The Gabrieleño were given this name by the Spanish, because they were named after the San Gabriel Mission, but they call themselves Tongva. The Juaneño, named by the Spanish after the San Juan Capistrano Mission, call themselves Acjachemen.
You can learn more about these Native American people at the links below:
In early 2021, the City of Irvine passed a resolution reaffirming Irvine's commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in our City and subsequently formed an Ad-hoc Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee. The committee's first campaign, “We Are Irvine,” aims to embrace and celebrate diversity and foster an environment that is inclusive of all cultures, races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations, ages, abilities, perspectives, and ways of thinking.
Visit the DEI Spotlight webpage to learn more. This webpage will be updated regularly to reflect the current and upcoming celebrations and observances of our community members and residents. You can also view information about previous observances here.