A sister city, county or state relationship is a broad-based, officially approved, long-term partnership between two municipalities in two countries. A sister city, county or state relationship is officially recognized after the highest elected or appointed official from both communities sign off on an agreement.


A city may have anywhere from one to an unlimited number of sister cities, ranging from a half dozen members to hundreds of volunteers, and receive some support from the local government.


Sister city relationships offer the flexibility to allow connections to form between communities that are mutually beneficial and take on issues that are most relevant for the partners.

A sister city organization is a volunteer group of ordinary citizens who, with the support of their local elected officials, form long-term relationships with people and organizations in a city abroad. Each sister city organization is independent and pursues the activities and thematic areas that are important to them and their community including municipal, business, trade, educational and cultural exchanges with their sister city.

Sister city organizations promote peace through people-to-people relationships—with program offerings varying greatly from basic cultural exchange programs to shared research and development projects between cities with relationships.


For more information on Sister Cities International, please check http://www.sister-cities.org/

ASCI is a volunteer organization so all members are giving their time to an organization they believe in. The result of membership in ASCI is being part of a group of people whose goal is citizen diplomacy. Members will make connections and facilitate conversations at a global level. In addition, you will be able to make a difference right here in our own community through education and awareness. ASCI members also have access to events throughout the year that are either discounted for members or restricted to members only. 

We welcome all citizens of Asheville and surrounding areas to participate in exchange programs. Each program will have a different set of criteria that must be met, but all programs require participants to be members of ASCI. To learn more about exchange programs click here. If you would like to participate in an exchange program please email ashevillesistercities@gmail.com.

Please be sure to check out the "Helpful Links When Visiting" at the bottom of each city's webpage. In addition, you can email ashevillesistercities@gmail.com to be connected with the Committee Chair for the city you are interested in visiting. The Chairperson will be able to connect you with citizens of the Sister City who can likely help facilitate a wonderful experience for your travels.

We are always looking for partnerships to connect citizens from our Sister Cities with local businesses, entrepreneurs, etc. for economic, cultural and art exchanges. Learn more here. We have a corporate membership option that allows you to be even more plugged in to our organization. We also host a number of events that need in-kind donations like venue space, music, food and beverage, door prizes, and speaker support in exchange for sponsor acknowledgement, etc.