30 October 2016

Announcing the 2017 Young Artist and Author Showcase!

The Richmond Sister Cities Commission and the Richmond Public Library is sponsoring the Young Artist and Author Showcase...Deadline is the 17th of February 2017. Please encourage Richmond's youth to participate with our Sister Cities.

The 2017 Theme: We’re Going Places

Sister Cities International aims to promote peace through mutual respect, understanding, and cooperation – one individual, one community at a time. This year’s theme, "We’re Going Places," showcases the importance of travel and exchange in achieving peace. Students are encouraged to draw inspiration from their experience with sister cities, travel, exchange, international friendships, and their goals to present their vision of where the future will lead.

The Richmond Sister Cities Commission will provide the following Cash prizes:

1st Place - $100.00
2nd Place - $75.00
3rd Place - $50.00

The 1st Place winners in each category will move onto Sister Cities International Competition with opportunity to win the Grand prize of $1,000.00.

Who’s eligible?
Authors and Artists: students who are between 13 and 18 years old at the time of the deadline, and who are affiliated with a dues-paying member of Sister Cities International or a non-U.S. community that is sister cities with a member of Sister Cities International. Filmmakers and Photographers: students who are between 13 and 22 years old at the time of the deadline. All submissions must conform to Sister Cities international’s policy on plagiarism found at sistercities.org/YAAS.


1. Each U.S. member community may submit one (1) piece of art on behalf of their community and one (1) piece of art on behalf of each of their sister city communities. Deadline for local Competition is the 17th of February 2017. 

2. Art must be two dimensional, unframed, and no larger than 24in. x 36in. No photography (see "Photography" below). Media of all other types are encouraged, including pencil, ink, paint, prints, collage, mixed media, etc.
3. Art that does not meet the above criteria will be ineligible and returned to the artist.

Essays and Poems
1. Essays 500 words or less; poems 200 words or less.
2. Multiple entries are allowed for sister city members and international city partners. However, please limit five entries per classroom.

1. All photography must be submitted through Instagram and must include @SisterCitiesInt, #YAAS2017, and the city, state, and country where the photographer is from in the photo’s caption to qualify.

2. Multiple entries are allowed per student.

1. Short films 1-10 minutes in length.

2. Films shot in color or black and white; documentary, fiction, and/or animation are all eligible.

3. Films must be submitted to http://cinequest.org/sister-cities-film-submissions. Access code: sistercities.

1. One (1) U.S. artist, one (1) international artist, one (1) poet, one (1) essayist, (1) photographer, and one (1) filmmaker will be selected as Grand Prize Winners.

2. Each Grand Prize Winner will receive $1,000 cash.

3. Five (5) U.S. and five (5) international finalists will be selected from the artist category.

4. Two (2) finalists will be selected from the poetry category and two (2) finalists from the essay category.

5. Five (5) U.S. finalists and five (5) international finalists will be selected from the photography category.

6. One (1) finalist will be selected from film category.

14 September 2016

12 September 2016

12 August 2016

After 7 year hiatus, Mali to hold mayoral elections

According to an announcement by the president's office of the Malian government, the country will hold mayoral elections nationwide on November 20, 2016. The race in Richmond's sister city, Segou, will be between several candidates including Mayor Ousmane K. Simaga (incumbent since 2009) and current city councilllor (and Segou sister city commissioner) Madani Sissoko. Both men will be part of the delegation travelling to Richmond in October as guests of VFOM with assistance from the Richmond Sister City Commission. Stay tuned for details on their visit. 

Mali: élections municipales le 20 novembre (officiel)

Following excerpt translated by Google Translate. Click the link above to see entire story, in French.
Malians are called to elect their mayors November 20 "throughout the national territory", seven years after the last municipal elections in this country plagued by unrest, the government said Wednesday. 
The Council of Ministers met on Wednesday under the leadership of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta "adopted a draft decree convening the electoral college, opening and closing of the electoral campaign on the occasion of the election of municipal councilors," says government in a statement. 
The campaign should open on November 4 and end on 18 November, he said. 
11 August 2016

07 August 2016


to be published in the Fall of 2016 by Edwin Mellen Press:

The Limits of Democracy and the Post-Colonial Nation State: Mali’s Democratic Experiment Falters while Jihad and Terrorism Grow in the Sahara
by Robin Edward Poulton and Raffaella Greco Tonegutti

This book is a follow-up to the famous peace study A PEACE OF TIMBUKTU (1998). It tells the story of Mali's failures since the turn of the millennium, including the how and why Al Qaida and ISIS rose to prominence and helped undermine the democracy of Mali and the stability of the Sahara.

03 August 2016

Richmond House / Maaya Musow: Finish the Well Campaign

Dear Friends,

We have launched a GoFundMe campaign to Finish the Segou-Richmond House Well.

We are so CLOSE! In mid July the digging had reached 9.8 meters and struck water. The next phase is to construct the stabilizing walls, apron foundation and apron, pump system and well cover. All before the rains inundate the worker's efficacy. Once the well is finished we can proceed to the next step: constructing the first building. You can be part of something long lasting, effective and wonderful.

Download information on the Segou-Richmond House project. Give to this effort. Consider a long term commitment to it as well.


Join us on Friday, September 23, at the Neighborhood Resource Center at Fulton Hill for a National Mali Day concert to benefit the Richmond House / Maaya Musow project.

Thank you!

30 March 2016

“Here in Mali we say that the first cup is bitter like life, the second is sweet like love and the third is soft, like the breath of a dying man.”