Anjo, Japan - Sister city
In October 1988, the former City of Altona (now Hobsons Bay City Council) established a sister city agreement with the City of Anjo in Japan.
The two cities aim to develop friendship and goodwill through the relationship, as well as exchanging information, ideas, culture and traditions.
As a result of the agreement, the Altona (now Hobsons Bay) International Friendship Association was formed by local residents. The association organises the annual student exchange program which provides an opportunity for students from both countries to experience a different culture and lifestyle.
It also participates in a cultural exchange program every two years, where each city donates five pieces of art from their local artists.
About Anjo, Japan
Anjo is situated near the centre of the Nishi-Mikawa Plain, around 30 km from Nagoya. It covers an area approximately 86 square km with a population of approximately 180,000 people.
Like Hobsons Bay, Anjo was originally an agricultural district and now industrial development has taken over. There are now around 1,200 manufacturing companies located in Anjo.
Anjo 20th anniversary celebrations
The two Councils celebrated the 20th anniversary of the Sister City relationship in October 2008.
As part of the celebrations a delegation from Anjo that included the Mayor of Anjo, Mr Gaku Kamiya and Vice Chairman of the Anjo International Association, Mr Ando, visited Hobsons Bay.
The visit included a tour of the city, a bush dance hosted by the Hobsons Bay International Friendship Association and an official dinner.
The Council also held an art exhibition 'Arigato' made up of a selection of artworks and gifts given to the Council by Anjo over the past 20 years.
A staff exchange program was also established to commemorate the anniversary, providing staff members with the opportunity to experience working in another culture, bring back new ideas and develop their skills.
Hobsons Bay City Council hosted Tomoyoshi Takahashi from September to November 2009 and Anjo City Council will host Dallas Giles from July to September 2009.
Anjo 10th anniversary celebrations
The two Councils celebrated the 10th anniversary of the Sister City relationship in October 1998.
To commemorate the anniversary a Japanse garden was established at the Hobsons Bay Civic Centre. The garden reflects the similarities and differences between the two cultures through the use of traditional Japanese garden design and the planting of native Australian species.
A traditional Japanese stone lantern was presented to Hobsons Bay by Anjo at the official garden opening ceremony.
Hobsons Bay International Friendship Association
Students from Anjo on their trip to Hobsons Bay in 2007The Hobsons Bay International Friendship Association (HBIFA) assists the Council with its sister-city relationship with Anjo and promotes the friendship throughout Hobsons Bay.
The group arranges the annual student exchange program where four students and a chaperone visit Anjo, stay with host families for two weeks, and experience Japan’s culture.
The local students and chaperone host the Japanese students and show them life in Australia. HBIFA also regularly exchanges artwork with Anjo and hosts a delegation of adults from Japan.
For more information about the HBIFA contact:
Sharon Hockley - President
Pina Tiso - Secretary
Tel: 0404 051 792