Birmingham – Johannesburg Sister City engagement

"Johannesburg" by Martijn  Munneke

“Johannesburg” by Martijn Munneke used under CC BY 2.0

The Sister Cities of Birmingham and Johannesburg are currently developing a series of collaborative projects to address a number of common interests and challenges. With the objective of gaining mutual practical benefit, the two cities are working together around issues of city management, youth and the improvement of service delivery.

Young people are crucial to the development of any city. Like the majority of Commonwealth cities both Birmingham and Johannesburg have many young people, with the under 35 years of age population comprising approximately 45% of all residents. They are important in terms of city growth and economic success. So both city councils seek to support and engage with such people from an early age.

With that in mind there is a sharing of good practice and experience being undertaken. The initial focus is on early childhood development and youth service provision. This joint work is timely as councils wrestle with reducing resources and the need to be more efficient and effective in the way services are delivered.

This city to city collaboration provides excellent opportunities to learn from each other providing real benefits to the citizens we serve.