City appoints 12 Hiroshima Messengers to enhance communication with Hiroshima’s six partner cities overseas

On December 23, a ceremony was held at Hiroshima City Hall to appoint 12 people to serve as Hiroshima Messengers. Commissioned by the Hiroshima City government, Hiroshima Messengers are volunteers who work to enhance communication between the city and its six overseas sister and friendship cities.

The Hiroshima Messengers program started in 2001, making 2020 its 20th year. Twelve messengers, two per city, were selected from among those who responded to a public call for applicants. Their duties will begin on January 1, 2021. During the one-year term, the messengers will play a role in planning and hosting Sister City and Friendship City events held in Hiroshima as well as in helping promote better understanding of each city.

Nine of the newly appointed messengers attended the ceremony and received a letter of appointment from Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui. Keiko Sueyoshi, 58, a corporate executive from Hiroshima’s Minami Ward, will be in charge of Honolulu, a city in the U.S. state of Hawaii she has visited numerous times as a tourist. “It’s a real pleasure for me to help the people of both cities discover each other’s charms and history,” Ms. Sueyoshi explained eagerly.

Other messengers are as follows (titles omitted):

Honolulu, the U.S.: Yasuko Asabe
Volgograd, Russia: Mitsumasa Gongen, Masumi Hashimura
Hanover, Germany: Natalia Garjaschin, Rie Yamashita
Chongqing, China: Yoko Shiroishi, Rieko Fujisawa
Daegu, Korea: Ayaka Kuwabara, Emiko Kanbe
Montreal, Canada: Hitomi Abiru, Tatsuhiro Morimoto

(Originally published on December 24, 2020)