The Rikubetsu Friendship Society welcomed a student delegation to Lacombe from Rikubetsu, Japan in 2019. (Todd Colin Vaughan/LACOMBE EXPRESS) The Rikubetsu Friendship Society welcomed a student delegation to Lacombe from Rikubetsu, Japan in 2019. (Todd Colin Vaughan/LACOMBE EXPRESS)

Lacombe renews commitment to sister-city in Japan

Rikubetsu Friendship Society will also be given space on City of Lacombe website

The City of Lacombe has renewed their commitment to maintaining a relationship with it’s sister-city, Rikubetsu Japan.

The Rikubetsu Friendship Society recently requested direction from council, with the hopes of gaining more administrative support and space on the City of Lacombe website to promote the relationship — which typically brings in a group of Japanese exchange students every year.

“Members of the society were seeking support, that went to council and produced a review of what the society does for the city of Lacombe. What came out of that is that the City has pledged to support the society,” Councillor Cora Hoekstra said.

The pledge includes the continuation of the now 30-year-old agreement, along with a place on the website. Council, however, will no longer have an appointed position within the society.

“They are very happy to receive that support. They are saddened to hear there is no longer an appointed City councillor to the friendship society, but that does not mean that it will stop councillors from joining the society as a private citizen. That is something we can explore going forward,” Hoekstra said.

Hoekstra said she has loved being involved with the society, and mentioned that former appointed member Councillor Reuben Konnik and Mayor Grant Creasey — who has travelled to Japan — were both in support of the twinning agreement.

“We had a good conversation at council on how our community is culturally enriched by our friendship with Rikubetsu,” she said.

Due to the pandemic, the society will not be welcoming exchange students this year — but the society is exploring ways to maintain the relationship including former host families hand-written messages through the mail to their former students. Hoekstra added there will be a meeting in the fall discussing what else can be else can be done.

“That meaning will be about our plans going forward and how we can utilize supportive resources from the city including what our web page will look like. One key effort will be to involve new members and we are hoping the added commitment from the city will solicit new members,” she said.



todd.vaughan@lacombeexpress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Lacombe Raiders football begins delayed Spring Camp

Football players required to follow guidelines laid out by AHS

46 new COVID-19 cases reported Wednesday in Alberta

Province has completed more than 500,000 COVID-19 tests

Mary C. Moore Public Library receives reopening helping hand from Lacombe Ford

Library computer services now available by appointment

City of Lacombe planning cemetery headstone cleaning

City currently looking for volunteers

PODCAST: Black Lives Matter in central Alberta Part 2

More insight into the Black Lives Matter movement of central Alberta

PODCAST: The Expert tackles the return of sports

Cam Moon, Joe Whitbread, Byron Hackett and Todd Vaughan discuss how sports can come back

Supreme Court gives NY prosecutor a landmark legal victory

Supreme Court gives NY prosecutor a landmark legal victory

Aritzia Inc. reports first-quarter loss, revenue drop amid COVID-19

Aritzia Inc. reports first-quarter loss, revenue drop amid COVID-19

Canada’s response on tariffs won’t be bound by terms of USMCA: negotiator

Canada’s response on tariffs won’t be bound by terms of USMCA: negotiator

Setbacks hamper pipeline industry backed by Trump

Setbacks hamper pipeline industry backed by Trump

S&P/TSX composite index relatively flat ahead of second-quarter earnings

S&P/TSX composite index relatively flat ahead of second-quarter earnings

DavidsTea closing 82 stores in Canada and all 42 stores in the U.S. market

DavidsTea closing 82 stores in Canada and all 42 stores in the U.S. market

Severe thunderstorm warning for Central Alberta

Central Alberta expected to have severe thunderstorms roll through Thursday June 9, 2020.

Most Read