Sister Cities to Partner with PNG

Sister Cities International (SCI) has announced plans to establish Sister City partnerships with three cities in Papua New Guinea (PNG).

The initiative aims to strengthen economic, cultural, and educational ties between the U.S. and PNG at the grassroots level.

SCI is currently facilitating discussions between officials from Port Moresby and Long Beach, California; Lae and Charleston, South Carolina; and Madang and Poplar, Wisconsin.

The partnerships will focus on various collaborative efforts, including trade and entrepreneurship, tourism promotion, professional exchanges, emergency training, and educational programs featuring reciprocal exchanges of students and adults.

 "These people-to-people connections are pathways to peace," said Carlo Capua, Chair-elect of SCI. Capua, who visited PNG 25 years ago, expressed eagerness to return and engage with local communities.

Historical connections between the U.S. and PNG are notable. WWII hero Major Richard Bong from Poplar, Wisconsin, flew missions over PNG, and his airplane was recently discovered near Madang.

Additionally, the USS Yorktown, now a museum in Charleston, played a pivotal role in the Battle of the Coral Sea near Lae.

Dr. Ricki Garrett, President and CEO of SCI, emphasized the potential of these partnerships to enrich communities and cultivate future leaders in both countries.

Representatives from SCI will attend the FestPAC Cultural Festival in Hawai'i this June to meet with PNG officials and discuss the formal establishment of these partnerships. Capua will then travel to PNG at the end of June to seek additional cities interested in collaboration.

SCI, founded in 1956 by President Dwight D. Eisenhower, promotes municipal partnerships to foster global friendships and cultural understanding. Currently, SCI supports over 400 sister city relationships in 145 countries.

This initiative marks the first Sister City partnerships between the U.S. and PNG.

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