New program in Virginia designed to ‘bridge cultural and geographic divides’


VIRGINIA (WJHL) — Virginia Governor Ralph Northam announced today the launch of the Virginia Local Government Exchange Program – an initiative designed to bridge cultural and geographic divides across the Commonwealth.  

The pilot program will begin with two partnerships: Wise County and the City of Norton will team up with the City of Alexandria. The only partnership is the city of Danville connecting with Loudoun County.  

According to a release issued from the Governor’s Office, “the program is modeled after the successful Sister Cities International program, which provides a forum to exchange information and build stronger relationships around the world. President Dwight Eisenhower created Sister Cities International in 1956 to promote better understanding, respect, and cooperation across international boundaries.” 

The program is a partnership between the Governor’s Office, Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, Virginia Association of Counties, and Virginia Municipal League. These communities will develop delegations that will visit their partner communities to highlight assets and opportunities and familiarize themselves with another community. 

You can learn more about the project HERE.

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