Southlake Sister Cities recently celebrated 30 years of partnership with Tome City, Japan.
The organization is geared toward fostering global understanding through education and other exchange programs.
To celebrate their 30th anniversary, the SSC hosted a community wide picnic at Liberty Park in Southlake, where attendees enjoyed Asian cuisine, hot dogs and a birthday cake.
The event attracted up to 100 guests, among those where the original members of the SSC.
“We are most proud of our student exchange program. Every year from 1991 until the pandemic started, SSC sent about 10 students to visit our Japanese Sister City Tome. We also welcomed students from Tome, Japan several times,” Southlake Sister Cities President Katy Hintze said.
Southlake Sister Cities said almost 300 Southlake students have gone on the trip, living in the home of a local family, learning about the local culture and exploring the historical sites.
“We are proud of our student exchange program and are hoping to send students again starting in 2022,” Hintze said.
Three years ago, the organization implemented a Youth Board, offering leadership and volunteer opportunities to high school students.
Students were elected to officer positions as well as committee chair roles.
Students also have opportunities to aid the City of Southlake in programming.
“The SSC will continue to participate in the Keep Southlake Beautiful program, maintaining two streets for the City,” Hintze said. “We also offer numerous opportunities for community volunteer activities, benefiting the Southlake Public Library, Southlake Senior Activity Center and Bob Jones Nature Center.”
The SSC has several exciting projects and programs set to kick off in the near future, including more student exchange opportunities and additional community service activities. They are expanding their partnership with Fort Worth Sister Cities to enable more programs and student exchanges.
This fall, SSC is initiating a program with the Bob Jones Nature Center and Preserve called Painting Rocks for Peace, where participants can paint rocks with upbeat, happy messages and place them along the rock trail.
Sister Cities International is a non-profit organization whose mission is to “promote peace through mutual respect, understanding and cooperation, one individual, one community at a time.”
Learn more about Southlake’s sister city, Tome City, Japan.
For more information about Southlake Sister Cities visit www.SouthlakeSisterCities.org.