For Immediate Release
Norwalk Joins Sister Cities International
Mayor Harry Rilling announced today that the City of Norwalk has joined Sister Cities International, one of only six Connecticut cities to be paired with cities in other countries. “The Norwalk/Nagarote Sister City Project has done a remarkable job of sustainable community development in Nagarote, Nicaragua. I’m proud to have Norwalk engaged in this effort at citizen diplomacy and for Norwalk to join Sister Cities International on my watch” he stated.
The link with Sister Cities International will be celebrated with an exhibition of photographs by Tom Kretsch, professional photographer and President of the Norwalk/Nagarote Sister City Project. The exhibit will open in the Mayor’s Gallery at City Hall on Friday June 19, at 9:30 AM. Light refreshments will be served and the public is encouraged to visit the display, which will be available until July 10.
Mayor Rilling will declare Friday, June 19th, as Nagarote Day in Norwalk and volunteers from the Sister City Project will be greeting visitors at the entrance to City Hall from 9:00AM to 4:30PM with information, special sister city bracelets and maps showing Norwalk and Nagarote.
Founded by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956, Sister Cities International is a network uniting tens of thousands of citizen diplomats and volunteers in 545 communities with over 2,100 partnerships in 145 countries on six continents. The partnership with Nagarote, Nicaragua was started 29 years ago, but has only been officially linked to the city and to Sister Cities International this year. The Memorandum of Understanding linking the two cities has been signed by Norwalk’s Mayor Harry Rilling and Nagarote’s Mayor Mireya Candelaria Urroz Gutiérrez.
“In addition to all the great work they do in Nicaragua through scholarships and afterschool programs, the Norwalk/Nagarote Sister City Project is a boon to our kids here. The Honor Society at Norwalk High as well as kids at the Center for Global Studies are involved, students at Darien’s Royle School and Middlesex Middle School have pen pals in Nagarote while supporting scholarship students there, students from Staples High in Westport recently built a playground at a preschool in Nagarote, and a group from Northampton High School in Massachusetts will be traveling there next month. There are so many great opportunities to share ideas and experiences and to build understanding through sister city projects,” Rilling noted.