The City of Cleveland, the Jewish Federation of Cleveland and Global Cleveland announced today that Israeli city Beit Shean/Valley of Springs will become an official Cleveland Sister City. A celebratory ceremony occurred Thursday, May 2 at 9 a.m. at Cleveland Public Library Louis Stokes Wing located at 525 Superior Ave. View photos and video from today’s event.
“Cleveland’s strong international presence continues to be enhanced through educational, economic and cultural exchange with our sister cities,” said Mayor Frank G. Jackson. “We continue to build on our city’s tradition of cultural interchange and welcome Beit Shean as our newest sister city.”
As a result of Cleveland’s partnership with Beit Shean, the Cleveland Public Library is adapting a student-run model based on what its leadership has learned from the Beit Shean library. Similarly, Cleveland Community Development Corporations have shared their Place making methodologies to support the efforts of Beit Shean’s city center. In the last year alone, more than 500 Clevelanders have visited Beit Shean/Valley of Springs.
“For nearly 25 years, the Federation has worked closely with residents and civic leaders in Beit Shean/Valley of Springs to address a wide range of social and cultural issues confronting that region,” said Lynne Cohen, Federation’s Overseas Connections Committee Chair. “Through this work, we have been able to positively impact thousands of lives in Beit Shean/Valley of Springs and Cleveland. We are thrilled to see this relationship with the City of Cleveland take this significant step and look forward to the continued mutual-rewarding benefits that come from it.”
Mayor Jackson and Ambassador Dani Dayan, Consul General of Israel in New York, provided remarks at the ceremony. Global Cleveland will host the inaugural Cleveland Sister Cities Conference immediately following the ceremony. The Sister Cities conference will be held May 1-3, 2019 and is free and open to the public.
“Building connections with cities throughout the world is an important step toward sharing cultures and ideals with an understanding that we are all brothers and sisters united together,” said Council President Kevin J. Kelley. “I heartily welcome Valley of Springs, to our Cleveland community.”
With the addition of Beit Shean/Valley of Springs, Cleveland now has 23 sister cities around the world.