Urbana Sister Cities Program

Urbana Sister CitiesOn behalf of the Urbana Sister Cities Committee (USCC) I invite you to discover and participate in the Urbana Sister Cities Program. The City of Urbana is proud host to three international Sister Cities partnerships: the city of Zomba, Malawi, Haizhu District in the city of Guangzhou, The People’s Republic of China, and the city of Thionville, France.

Sister Cities partnerships are created through friendships developed between residents of Urbana and citizens in other countries around the world, are chartered by Sister Cities International, and approved by the Urbana City Council.

Goals of the Urbana Sister Cities Program

  • Develop sustainable Sister Cities partnerships with other countries around the world.
  • Provide opportunities for citizens and city officials to explore other cultures by building long-term partnerships with our Sister Cities partners.
  • Create programs which foster economic and cultural development between partnering cities.
  • Explore opportunities to learn, work, and solve problems together through reciprocal programs and international exchanges.

Sister Cities International

Sister Cities International is a nonprofit citizen-based diplomacy network that creates partnerships between towns and cities in the U.S.A. and similar communities around the globe, striving to build international cooperation at the municipal level, promote cultural understanding, and stimulate economic development.

The Sister Cities program was created in September, 1956, by President Dwight D. Eisenhower following the end of WWII during a White House conference on citizen diplomacy. The positive response to this meeting lead tens of thousands of individuals to pledge their support to help create a free and peaceful world. Sister Cities International’s programs continue the effort to motivate and empower private citizens, municipal officials, business leaders, and community volunteers to build long-term Sister Cities partnerships which honor these high goals.

Sister Cities International’s Mission Statement is to . . . “Promote peace through mutual respect, understanding, and cooperation—one individual, one community at a time.”

lllinois Sister Cities Association

The City of Urbana is a member of the Illinois Sister Cities Association (ISCA), a state organization which supports the goals of Sister Cities International. Over 40 cities in Illinois that have established global partnerships are members of the Illinois Sister Cities Association. An annual meeting is held each year that is hosted by a member community. Urbana hosted the Association’s 2014 Annual Meeting. Urbana Alderman Dennis Roberts has served two terms on the ISCA Board of Directors (2009-2012 and 2012-2015). ISCA Information

History of the Urbana Sister Cities Program

The City of Urbana has been active in the community for more than 10 years. During that time Sister cities relationships have been forged and exchanges have been made, bringing foreign delegations to Urbana. A summary of its activities and accomplishments can be found at A Short History of the Urbana Sister Cities Program.

Urbana's Sister Cities Are:

  • Zomba, Malawi– Sister City status approved February 25, 2008. City Council agenda, "Motion to Approve Joining the Sister City Program to Establish a Sister City Relationship with the City of Zomba, Malawi, Africa."
  • Haizhu District, Guangzhou City, People's Republic of China – Friendship City status "Memorandum on the Establishment of Friendly Relationship" signed May 29, 2012.
  • Thionville, France – Twin Cities charter signed on Saturday, November 15, 2014, during the “70th Anniversary /Week of Remembrance Program, and Moselle Liberation (1944).”


The Urbana Sister Cities Committee meets on the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 5:30 p.m. at Strawberry Fields Cafe, 306 W. Springfield Ave in Urbana.
For further information, contact:

Dennis Roberts, Urbana Sister Cities Committee Chairman or 217-344-0069.

- Last Modified -August 19, 2019 - 3:21pm
- Author - admin