Sister Cities of Durham, North Carolina

Arusha-Tanzania, Durham-UK, Kavala-Greece, Kostroma-Russia, Toyama-Japan, Zhuzhou-China

Kavala, Greece is now officially our 6th Sister City with Durham!
Pictured are participants in the Nov. 29 virtual signing ceremony with 
Durham Mayor Bell and Kavala Mayor Mrs. Tsanaka
Front Row:  Carolyn Surles, New Cities Chair Gwenn Bookman,
Kavala Comm Chair Betty Tilley Seddon, 
Duke Homestead & Tobacco Museum Diretor Jessica Shillingsford,
Back Row: SCD Executive Director Brady Surles,
Kaval Com Co-Chair Randy Grifin, Zhuzhou Comm Chair Mark Goodwillie

The Kavala City Committee is now planning a trip to Greece in July, 2018 centered around the Kavala Cosmopolis Ethnic Dance Festival.
Interested in joining this trip?     Contact us:  [email protected]

At ourAnnual Meeting and Awards Ceremony:  Mon, Oct. 30
We presented the 4th Annual Sister Cities/Mayor's Awards for
"Promoting International Understanding" to:
American Dance Festival
Mayor William V. "Bill" Bell
Previous Recipients, 2014 - 2016 are:
Individuals:  Kathie Davidson, Bill Ingram, Star Sampson, Wendell Tabb, Lenora Helm Hammonds, Susan Urakami of Toyama, Japan,  Shuangyan Duan of Zhuzhou, China,

Tatiana Podvetelnikova of Kostroma, Russia.
Organizations:  Latino Community Credit Union, Durham Children's Choir,
Durham Bulls, Sister Communities of San Ramon, Nicaragua.
Rotary Clubs of Durham,  The Rotary Club of Durham, England, 

The Dorothy Borden Annual Volunteer Awards were presented to :
Gwenn Bookman,   Dick White

                                                    WHAT IS SISTER CITIES?
Our Sister Cities are famous for Mountains and Waterways.   They are linked with famous mountains such as Mt. Kilimanjaro and Mt. Meru,  in Tanzania,  the Wulingyuan Unesco World Heritage Site near Zhuzhou,  the Japanese Southern Alps near Toyama,  and with famous waterways such as the Volga River for Kostroma, the North Sea for Durham, England, and the Aegean Sea for Kavala. 

       Sister Cities International celebrated their 60th Anniversary in 2016, based on President Eisenhower's goal of "Citizen Diplomacy" with "people to people contacts" around the world at his White House Summit in 1956.   Durham started its Sister Cities journey in 1975 with a signing with Durham, England.  This was formalized by associating with Sister Cities International in 1989 with Durham, England, Toyama, Japan and Kostroma, Russia.  In 1991 we added Arusha, Tanzania, In 2012 we added Zhuzhou, China and Kavala, Greece in 2017.  
We also have two Friendship Cities in China --Kunshan and Xianning.

       The mission of Sister Cities is to promote Peace through mutual respect, understanding and cooperation -- One Individual, One Community at a time.  

       The Mayors of the respective cities meet and sign the agreements. 
 Durham is part of  SCI -- 560 US Cities and over 2,000 International Cities in 150 countries!

Interested in joining one of our City Committees? [email protected]

The Youth Committee visited One World Market in Durham to better understand how handcrafts and art work brought from developing countries to be sold in Durham, with the guarantee that those craftspeople are getting a "fair wage".  Youth Committee members represent most of the High Schools in Durham

Kostroma, Russia Delegate Marina Serebryakova, Chief Specialist of  the Tourism Department of Kostroma, presents a letter of greetings from the Mayor of Kostroma to Durham Mayor Bill Bell.

Some of our programs:
-- Educational Exchanges with Schools in Toyama, Kostroma, and Zhuzhou.
-- School Projects with Art, Photography, and Water Projects. 

-- Librarian Exchanges with Kostroma
-- Photo/Art Exchanges -Kostroma, Durham UK
-- Programs with Duke Gardens
-- Kavala programs with Duke Homestead
-- Maternity Clinic and Orphans' Uniforms Projects in Arusha
-- Medical Exchanges with Toyama
-- Toyama-Sister Cities Japanese Pavilion at Duke Gardens
-- Partnering with Durham Library, Durham Tech Community College, Duke Gardens, Duke Homestead Tobacco Museum

The Kostroma, Russia Delegation visited the Sister Cities display at City Hall. 

Board of Directors, 2017 - 2018

President:      Eve Marion
Vice Pres:      Vita Jones
Secretary:      Richard Jaworski
Treasurer:      Vivian Wan
        At Large Members:
Bob Ashley               Ann Evans           
Rich Jaworski           Sue Mathias
Silvia Rincon            Dick White
        - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Executive Director:  Brady Surles

Chairs of our City Committees:

Arusha: Ronda Pierce, Gwenn Bookman
Durham, UK:  Scott Hill, Nancy Proia
Kostroma:   Wendy White
Toyama      Mavis Mayer, Chris Boyer
Zhuzhou:    Mark Goodwillie, Lusia Li
Kavala:   Betty Tilley Seddon, Randy Griffin

    Become a Member
And consider volunteering for our general activities or to serve on one of our City Committees.

Annual Membership Dues are:

Individual                     $20

Family                          $35

Youth                            $10

Organizations             $150

  (Businesses, Educational Institutions)

Life Time                     $300

     We appreciate your support!

The  Annual Sister Cities & Mayor's Awards for "Promoting International Understanding" were presented at the Annual Meeting,  at City Hall.
Durham Mayor Bill Bell (second from left), City Councilman Don Moffitt (far left), and Sister Cities Board member B. C. Dash (far right) presented the awards to representatives of these Rotary Clubs:

-- Rotary Club of Durham
-- North Durham Rotary Club  

-- Southwest Durham Rotary Club
-- Sunrise Rotary Club of Durham

-- Rotary Club of Durham, England 

The Mayor's Award was also presented to:
 -- Star Sampson, Principal, Holt Elementary Language Academy
 -- Durham Children's Choir

8 students from Jordan High School led by teacher Daniel Miller visited our Sister City Kostroma, Russia, June 2017

We appreciate the support of these Organizations:
City of Durham
CoCo Jazz and Arts Center
Durham Technical and Community College -Center for the Global Learner

Duke Office of Regional and Durham Affairs
Duke Homestead Tobacco Museum
Rotary Club of Durham
Triangle Community Foundation