The Challenge of Sister Cities
We are living in an international crisis, the gravest of our generation. It will be a great challenge it wins and still find opportunities for solutions to conflicts and social inequalities that we have, especially in the so-called emerging countries.
It was a time of overcoming the crisis of 1929 that arose ideas, networks and organizations of solidarity, partnership and established the first international agreements between the cities.
The New Deal was the name given to the series of programs implemented in the United
States between 1933 and 1937, under the government of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt with the goal of restoring and reforming the U.S. economy, and assist affected by the Great Depression. In the next two decades - 40 and 50 - a number of initiatives have emerged in the international field, including the United Nations, stressed the idea that we have no other way than the union and the exchange of experiences between cities and stimuli.
In 1956, it launched the Sister Cities program, which President Eisenhower created to increase the positive relationship between U.S. cities and the world.The Town twinning is a concept that aims to create relationships and protocol mechanisms, mainly economic and cultural, through which cities and villages of different geographical or political areas, establish bonds of cooperation. The slogan of the Sister Cities International is "Peace Through People". In early 1972, visiting Brazil, Mayor of Atlanta Sam Masselli said the Rio de Janeiro was selected due to a specific request of Governor Jimmy Carter, who had become enchanted with the city. The Carter effort evolved into an agreement with Erasmo Martins Pedro, Deputy Governor of the State of Guanabara.
In 1977, Mayor Maynard Jackson renewed the effort to develop the relationship between Atlanta and Rio de Janeiro creating the Atlanta Committee - Rio de Janeiro, connected to his office. In celebration of 36 years in 2008 - was established a Foundation to fund social projects in Brazil - Rio Atlanta Sister Cities Foundation is presided over by American businessman Franklin McGruder and the Brazilian sociologist Marco Fonseca, now the State Ombudsman. The objectives of this organization will develop municipal partnerships between the city of Atlanta and Rio de Janeiro; Providing opportunities for government officials and ordinary citizens of both cities to experience both cultures through relationship and partnership projects in the long run, create a atmosphere in which economic and community development can be implemented, developed and strengthened, stimulate the environment through which communities can creatively learn, work and solve problems through exchanges and cultural projects, sports, educational, municipal, professional, technical, and business.
In February 1996, Chamber of Commerce and the Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games of Atlanta co-hosted the Mayor Cesar Maia, who led the Australian Olympic movement. Even without official support, dozens of citizens of Atlanta and Rio continue organizing, promoting events and encouraging partnerships. Other Brazilian cities like Belo Horizonte, Salvador and Brasilia have produced a series of productive relationships with other cities through this program.
There are a number of benefits that partnerships with the U.S. government and foreign organizations, already exploited by other cities, such as the "Young Ambassadors" is a social responsibility initiative of the U.S. Embassy, in partnership with public and private institutions for young people in public schools that have a leadership profile and awareness of citizenship. The program not only aims to give young people the chance to travel to the U.S. or improve their English. The idea is that participants from becoming ambassadors that will strengthen the bonds of friendship, respect and collaboration between USA and Brazil. The Atlanta Rio Foundation now proposes the "sister schools" (schools sisters) to integrate schools, students and teachers of both cities through exchanges and activities. Working groups are being formed to support the Olympic bid of Rio, using all the experience the legacy of the Atlanta Games.
The agreements also seek to establish the exchange of knowledge and experience in several areas, such as urban management, public policy, research centers, universities, health, education, sports, culture, social welfare, environment, arts, science and technology . New management will be essential to look closely at the Rio for this type of initiative, which will surely bring great benefits to the citizens of Rio. The city is the birthplace of Martin Luther King Jr., one of the heroes of the civil rights movement reaches out to Rio The city is the headquarters of Coca-Cola, CNN, the big builders in the sister city calls. And we, what do we do?
In December 2008 the Ministry of Justice authorizes the Atlanta Rio de Janeiro Sister Cities Foundation - turned the City of Atlanta - to operate in Brazil. It is the first legal step after more than 30 years of political relationship between the two cities and one of the exit doors to the international crisis.