Columbia Association and The Build Haiti Foundation continue to drive the sister city effort by providing necessary support to the committee comprising of over thirty members. Back in 2013, Bob Anantua, the Chairman of the sister city committee and David Weeks, the Vice-Chair of the same committee, traveled to Haiti and met with the then Mayor, Jean Renaud to discuss the interest expressed by the Columbia residents in a sister city relationship between Columbia and Cap-Haitian. The interest was expressed in the form of a letter from the Columbia Association. The individuals, institutions and the mayoral staff were all excited and a letter was immediately drafted by the Mayor’s office committing to the relationship. Both cities have a mutual interest in promoting culture, educational exchange, environmental sustainability, and numerous other ventures that may stem from this effort.
Two years later, the incumbent mayor, Yvon Alteon, has provided his blessing with another letter to show his support and commitment to this effort. Once again, Mr. Anantua and Mr. Weeks traveled to Haiti as part of the Build Haiti Foundation’s Global Leadership Program (GLP), a program that engages professionals, college and high school students to develop their leadership skills while making a difference. While in Cap-Haitian the BHF executives continued to collect valuable information about the city in order to prepare for the upcoming presentation to the Columbia Association Board in October 2015. The sister city committee is expected to meet on August 20, 2015 at the CA headquarter in Columbia to do further coordination and preparation. Columbia residents and others interested in this effort are encouraged to come to the meeting and provide additional support as it will be important to have a strong committee capable to lead the different interest groups that include culture, history and the arts, education, business, communication and technology, health and sanitation, etc.