Special welcome for Ayane!
Back in 1997, when the Corowa/Yokawa Sister City Agreement was signed, Corowa identities Gary and Christine Poidevin nursed two-month old Ayane Mantari.
Last week, Ayane, a representative of Miki City International Association, made her first trip to Australia and to Corowa, and renewed acquaintances with the Poidevins.
As Corowa Shire Mayor, Gary Poidevin, attended an International Sister City Conference in Tokyo in 1996 and was met by representatives of Yokawa City.
“Yokawa City representatives took myself and the General Manager (then Bruce Corcoran) to have a look around Yokawa to see if there were similarities and potential for a sister city relationship,” Mr Poidevin OAM told The Free Press.
“Ayane’s mother was the interpreter between Corowa and Yokawa. Twelve months later we returned to sign a Sister City Agreement and nursed Ayane! We send her birthday presents every year. It’s great seeing her here in Corowa.”
Ayane shared the sentiments. “I love the Poidevins,” she said.
Of the 21-year partnership, Gary said: “It’s absolutely fantastic the relationship that the Corowa community and our sister city has remains as strong today as it was 21 years ago,” the former record 13-year-mayor of the former Corowa Shire Council said.
“It’s been wonderful and I hope it continues for a long time to come.”
Twenty-one years on, 21-year-old Ayane Mantari with Gary and Christine Poidevin at Federation Council’s welcome on August 21.