News from Our Project Partnerships: Highlights 2019
In late summer, Minsk students were invited by the City of Bonn and the Minsk Club to attend the 4th Energy Seminar in Bonn. Although these seminar participants came from a city of 2 million, they agreed: "We have underestimated Bonn with its 328,000 inhabitants. Bonn is much more lively, more colorful and more international than Minsk!”
The seminar on "Renewable Energies as a Measure to Combat Climate Change" was held for students of Bonn’s project partner city in Belarus for the fourth time already. This year, however, it was jointly organized by the City of Bonn and the Minsk-Club Bonn e.v. And thanks to the support of Engagement Global / Service Agency Communities in One World, more participants could be invited to attend.
In addition to eight students from Minsk and the surrounding area, the Deputy Director of the Energy Center of the City of Minsk also took part in the one-week program in Bonn.
Bonn and Chengdu celebrated the tenth anniversary of their fruitful partnership
Chengdu, capital city of the Sichuan Province, has become an important business hub in China. With its roughly 15 million inhabitants, it is Bonn’s largest partner city. The cities of Chengdu and Bonn have maintained friendly ties since the year 2,000. These have involved close cultural contacts and mutual visits. In 2009, the partnership treaty was signed.
In 2013, both cities signed a climate partnership agreement under the title ‘Bonn-Chengdu Partnership for Sustainable Low-Carbon Development’. Senior experts from the city administration, civil society, the business and scientific community now discuss mobility, sustainable urban development and energy efficiency and related issues during technical conferences and meetings.
The partnership also involves a close cultural exchange and a variety of other mutual encounters.
The tenth anniversary of the partnership was celebrated on Bonn’s Market Square on 1 June. In a varied program, highlights from the province of Sichuan were presented. The public could experience traditional mask changes, the classical tea ceremony and Chinese dances. There were also two singing-along programmes for children and adults as well as performances of the Bonn band "Kochkraft durch KMA", very successful in Chengdu, and Markus Schinkel Trio in the evening.
Visitors could learn about Chinese culture at 9 different market stalls, experience new culinary delights with chefs from Chengdu or see Chinese artisans at work.
The new Metropolitan Coordinating Director Rachel Fousa-Sarpong of Bonn's project partner city Cape Coast in Ghana also paid a visit to Bonn this fall.
At Bonn’s House of Nature, which has just been refurbished and expanded, she informed herself about the new interactive educational offers and the links between the exhibition and the accompanying outdoor program.
Cape Coast has a similar environmental education institution: the Biodiversity Centre. It was established as part of a joint cooperative project between the Cities of Bonn and Cape Coast to renature the local Fosu Lagoon. While in Bonn the focus is on the sensual experience of the forest habitat, in Cape Coast everything revolves around the ecosystem of the lagoon.
October saw the visits of representatives from the two project partner cities of Cape Coast and La Paz, which had been facilitated by the City of Bonn. The delegations participated in a forum on sustainable public procurement, which was organized by the German Development Institute, a Bonn-based think tank. The conference was also attended by a larger delegation from Ghana under the leadership of the Head of the Local Government Service in Ghana, Dr. Nana Ato Arthur, who is a long-time friend of the partnership between Bonn and Cape Coast and who had also taken part in the celebrations for the 10th anniversary of the fruitful partnership last year.
The forum was organized in the framework of the ongoing project entitled Municipalities Promoting and Shaping Sustainable Value Creation (MUPASS) – Public Procurement as a Tool for Fair and Sustainable Production.
In times where at least 10% to 20% of the GDP of most countries is generated by public demand, it has long become clear that linking public procurement of goods and services with ambitious sustainability requirements can have a major leverage effect on the transformation towards sustainability.
MUPASS is an international research and dialogue project implemented by the German Development Institute (DIE) in close cooperation with the Service Agency Communities in One World (SKEW) and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).
In November, a delegation from Bukhara visited Bonn to find out more about food hygiene and related topics and engage in a professional exchange against the backdrop of a growing hotel and catering industry in Uzbekistan. An extensive program included visits to various caterers and larger restaurants as well as meetings with food inspectors in Bonn.
A delegation from the Sichuan province government visited Bonn in December to find out more about the German (dual) vocational training system. A lecture was given at the Bonn / Rhine-Sieg Chamber of Industry and Commerce.
News from Our Project Partnerships: Highlights 2020
Partnership unites: Fruitful exchange with Minsk, Belarus
A delegation from Bonn’s Belarusian project partnership city visited Bonn at the beginning of February. The delegation from the capital of the Republic of Belarus included the Deputy Mayor of Minsk, Artiom Tsuran, and several representatives of the city administration and Belarusian social and educational institutions. The focus of the trip was the exchange on the topic "Inclusive City in the Context of Agenda 2030". Concrete cooperation projects were developed in several meetings between the city representatives of Minsk and Bonn. The City of Minsk will apply for funds from the Belarus 2019-2022 funding programme for one of these projects. The City of Bonn is providing support in an advisory capacity during the application process.
Implementing Agenda 2030 with partners across the world: Funding approved for a joint project between Bonn and Minsk
In the Republic of Belarus, an inclusive labor and employment policy is aimed at integrating socially vulnerable groups of the population, such as people with disabilities and special needs who are not able to compete in the labor market, in the sphere of social and labor relations. It is possible to ensure this integration by creating secure employment and supportive labor relations, which will be realized through the opening of specialized labor workshops. These will help ensure the social and labor adaptation, rehabilitation and integration of people with disabilities into society and allow them to exercise their constitutional right to work.
Funding for this project was approved in April and will help support a number of project measures in Minsk.
Implementing Agenda 2030 with partners across the world: Collaboration with Cape Coast (Ghana) on waste management
Partnership work goes digital
Both cities have joined the Waste Wise Cities Campaign launched by in February 2020.
With the support of the program the two cities want to specifically address the challenges of municipal solid waste management.
In a first step, a waste profile will be established for Cape Coast. Based on this analysis, priorities will be identified and suitable pilot projects will be developed. UN Habitat will also assist in the mobilization of funds for these activities.
All three partners, Bonn, Cape Coast and UN Habitat, have committed themselves to collaborating within the framework of the Waste Wise Cities Challenge through the exchange of knowledge, expertise and experience.
Due to the current Corona crisis affecting all countries around the globe, a first kick-off meeting took place online with partners from UN Habitat in Nairobi, the Mayor of Cape Coast, Ernest Arthur, several colleagues in Ghana and their counterparts from the City of Bonn.
One concrete next step the two cities have taken under the leadership of ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability, which also supports these endeavors, is a joint application for a project under the International Climate Initiative (IKI). Together with local stakeholders from civil society in Cape Coast, the partners would like to expand the work on the protection of the Fosu Lagoon through systemic circular economy measures. These will involve local civil society organizations, especially waste pickers, and will also be geared towards developing education activities focused on the biodiversity and climate benefits of the lagoon.
Partnership unites: Bonn receives 12,000 Masks from Chengdu
A nice example of our friendly relations has reached the City of Bonn from its project partner city of Chengdu in China this spring - in the form of 12,000 medical mouth and nose protection masks.
After the pandemic had abated in Chengdu, the Chinese City of Chengdu supported the City of Bonn with this special gift in the Corona crisis. A wonderful sign of friendship in times of crisis and concern!