Former Foreign Service Officer Explains the Importance of Volunteering in Your Local Sister City Organization

Kate Bentley, former U.S. Department of State Foreign Service Officer, tells us the value and importance of volunteering in your local sister city organization. As she explains, these volunteers are helping build a foundation to form a relationship that will lead to mutual respect, understanding, and cooperation.  These partnerships begin for a variety of reasons and can result in long-term benefits including economic ones. Most interesting is Kate’s response when someone asks her about the importance of sister cities — “I tell them, you know, let’s put it on a local scale. We are neighbors– you know me and I know you, and if a problem ever arose we can discuss it. Why? Because we have already developed that relationship and foundation and this is no different on a country to country basis. On a diplomatic level, it is just those relationships we rely on and we depend upon that are so important. “

Click here for a transcript of the value of Sister Cities International’s work from the perspective of Kate Bentley, a former diplomat and Sister Cities volunteer in Nashville, Tennessee.