WASHINGTON, D.C. (November 17, 2014) – The United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation will present Sister Cities International’s Sino-African Initiative (SAI) with the 2014 South-South Cooperation for Partnership Award. The Award will be presented during the Closing Ceremony and Annual South-South Cooperation Awards at the Global South-South Development Expo in Washington, D.C. on November 21, 2014. Sister Cities International President and CEO, Mary D. Kane, and former SAI Program Manager, Lula Chen, will accept the award.

SAI, a unique two-year program that ended earlier this year, was designed to address the manner in which Chinese, African, and U.S. cities can collaborate on economic development and urban poverty issues in Africa. By working with Chinese, African, and U.S. public diplomacy networks, local municipal governments, and businesses, this initiative aimed to create strategies that ensured development and poverty alleviation projects addressed community needs, and promoted transparent business practices and government accountability. SAI will be recognized for its innovation as a unique program that leveraged trilateral, North-South-South partnerships. Partnerships included the African-U.S.-Chinese cities of Nairobi-Denver-Kunming, Osogbo-Asheville/Raleigh-Xiangyang, Zomba-Urbana-Haizhu District.

“SAI drew on the inimitable strengths of the sister city network – dedicated volunteers from across the community, using their skills, creativity, and relationships to bring mutual benefit to cities and partners. The award is a recognition of years of hard work that our staff and sister city program members put in to ensure this program was a success,” said Ms. Kane. In addition to accepting the award, Ms. Kane will represent Sister Cities International as a panelist during the City-to-City Decentralized Cooperation in the Framework of Triangular and South-South Cooperation Panel at the Expo on November 20, 2014.

The Global South-South Development Expo showcases successful Southern-grown development solutions addressing the need to meet Millennium Development Goals. The South-South Awards, established in 2010, honor governments, organizations, and individuals who make significant contributions to technology and innovation that successfully address sustainable development goals while looking forward to a future built on strong South-South cooperation.

For more information about the Sino-African Initiative, please visit

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About Sister Cities International

Founded by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956, Sister Cities International serves as the national membership organization for over 500 individual sister cities, counties, and states across the United States with relationships in 2,000 communities in 140 countries. This sister city network unites tens of thousands of citizen diplomats and volunteers who work tirelessly to promote peace and understanding through programs and projects focusing on arts and culture, youth and education, economic and sustainable development, and humanitarian assistance.

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Megha Swamy
[email protected]

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