Author: Danielle McCown

German Mayor Leading Delegation of 53 to Fort Worth

Fort Worth, Texas – Celebrating 30 years of partnership

Fort Worth Sister Cities International will welcome a delegation of 53 people from Trier, Germany to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Sister Cities partnership between Fort Worth and Trier on September 30, 2017.

Led by the Mayor of Trier, Wolfram Leibe, the delegation plans to visit with Fort Worth City Council members and City Manager David Cooke, tour Sundance Square, and take part in a Reaffirmation Ceremony with Mayor Price. At mid-day on October 2, the famous Stadtgarde Augusta Trevororum, the official marching band of Trier, will perform in Sundance Square. This group travels on all official visits with the mayor and it is an honor to have them perform in Fort Worth.

This exchange comes after a delegation from Fort Worth visited Trier in 2016 to leverage Fort Worth’s long-standing friendship with Trier and capitalize on the opportunity to grow a new platform in the business sphere of influence.

“Our visit to Trier was just the beginning of continued growth.  The business counterpart meetings created value and experience to think and grow small business internationally,” said Johnny Campbell, Chairman of the Board of Fort Worth Sister Cities. “We are excited to welcome our guests and show them what Fort Worth has to offer, as well as to celebrate thirty years of friendship which is something to be valued and is more important today than ever before.”

Rotary Leads Humanitarian Mission to Mbabane

Fort Worth, TX First Partnership with Rotary Club for 2017 Swaziland Mission

Fort Worth Sister Cities International, in partnership with the International Service Committee of the Rotary Club, is planning a mission to Mbabane, Swaziland. An adult delegation of 25 will travel to Fort Worth’s seventh sister city from Sept. 1 – 10, 2017. Participants will deliver 265 wheelchairs and 5 bicycles directly to those in need and teach the recipients how to maintain the chairs to provide income for them and sustain the project.

Additionally, Fort Worth Sister Cities is partnering with Dream Outside the Box founder Kam Phillips to provide “Dream Delivered” boxes to the Swazi children. These boxes, brimming with fun and educational activities and pamphlets, are designed to introduce children to diverse careers, such as forensic science, journalism, and archaeology.

“Our Swaziland trip is taking the Rotary Wheelchair program to the next level. We are not only distributing donated wheelchairs to those in need, we are establishing a wheelchair and bicycle repair shop business that Mbabane citizens will operate long after we are gone,” said David Campbell, Rotary President. “The training and equipment we will provide makes this project more sustainable, creating a legacy of trade skills that will ensure the repair of wheelchairs and bicycles we bring and provide jobs for years to come.”

Some participants are also staying an additional two nights at the Shepherd’s Tree Game Lodge to experience a South African safari. With lions, leopards, elephants, buffaloes, and rhinos, the group will see the “Big Five” up close and personal.

For more information about future Sister Cities exchanges, call Danielle at 817/632-7100 for more information.

Fort Worth Youth Ambassadors Visit Japan & Prepare for Reciprocal Exchange

FORT WORTH, TX Sister Cities provides unique opportunity for Fort Worth youth

Since 1990, The Harashin Co. of Nagaoka, Japan has funded scholarships for eight Fort Worth students and two teachers to travel there for an educational and cultural enrichment experience. In return, the families of these Fort Worth students host students and teachers from Nagaoka in their homes.

This program and all the scholarships have been funded by the Hara family and Harashin Co. Ltd. of Nagaoka. For 26 years, it is estimated that over $2 million has been generously donated.

Fort Worth Harashin scholars include: Henry Chao, Charlie Estes, Valeria Gutierrez, Zoe Nichols-Payne, Jamil Okada, Matthew Ontiveros, Janrose Samson, Shay Smith, and delegation leaders Liliana Hinojosa and Mikako Daniel.

“Exchange programs are a key element in the overall programs of Fort Worth Sister Cities and this unique opportunity for students is no exception,” said Johnny Campbell, Chairman of Fort Worth Sister Cities International. The students depart July 26 for a week-long exchange and the Japanese students will be in Fort Worth August 8-16.

On August 14, Fort Worth and Nagaoka Harashin scholars will visit Globe Life Park for Japan America Friendship Night with the Texas Rangers. The students and delegation leaders will have the opportunity to take part in a pre-game flag ceremony on the field.

All student applicants (9th-11th grades) participate in a vigorous selection process including teacher recommendations, essays and personal interviews. The Harashin Scholars are required to attend monthly cultural orientations to further enrich their international experience and prepare them for the exchange.

Exchanges with each of Fort Worth’s eight sister cities provide youth the opportunity to spend 9-15 days with an international host family and experience their history, culture and customs. These students become citizen diplomats through this program.  It gives them a better understanding of other cultures providing them an international education only these programs can offer.

International Students Attend Leadership Academies

Fort Worth, TX: The Art of Diplomacy, Theme of Academies

High school students from around the world will descend on Fort Worth starting July 10.  Students from Germany, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Mexico, and Swaziland, along with Fort Worth students, will be in Fort Worth for the 28th International Leadership Academy. The Academy’s goal is to increase communication and leadership skills through team-building and problem-solving using the art of diplomacy.

Since 1989, the International Leadership Academy (ILA) has brought young people from Fort Worth’s 8 sister cities to the area to discuss pressing global issues. This year, nearly 75 participants will converge at Texas Christian University (TCU) July 15 – 30 to share their cultures and learn about citizen diplomacy and its importance in today’s world.

Participants will live on the TCU campus and share a room with students from another country. They will attend classes that are designed to challenge stereotypes, highlight cultures, promote diplomatic dialogue, develop leadership skills, and solve global problems. Activities will also include visits to area businesses, museums, and other cultural venues specific to Fort Worth, as well as a community service project.

This year marks the 13th year of ILA’s middle school program, the Jr. International Leadership Academy (JILA), held July 10—14. College students from Toluca, Mexico and Mbabane, Swaziland will serve as facilitators for Fort Worth students who will discuss the same issues as their high school counterparts, gaining international perspectives.

“The students will be challenged to improve and refine their leadership skills and learn how diverse cultures can support common goals. It’s a tremendous opportunity for personal growth,” said Nancy Marchant, ILA and JILA Coordinator.

The closing ceremony for ILA takes place July 29, 10:00 a.m. at TCU’s BLUU Ballroom and is free and open to the public. For more info call 817/632-7100.