The Port Hardy Twinning Society marching through the streets of Port Hardy. (Port Hardy Twinning Society photo)

The Port Hardy Twinning Society marching through the streets of Port Hardy. (Port Hardy Twinning Society photo)

Twinning society members burnt out, want District of Port Hardy to take over direction

‘The chair has acted and been responsibly involved for close to 25 years’

The future of the Port Hardy Twinning Society (PHTS) has been decided, at least for the time being.

The PHTS sent a report to council back at the beginning of September stating that “the current delivery of the twinning relationship by the PHTS does not appear to be sustainable at this time.”

RELATED: End of an era for twinning society?

RELATED: Port Hardy hosts Numata students

According to the report, which was submitted by Leslie Driemel (Chair), Mark Jones (Treasurer), and Shantel Genest (Secretary), the executive, who are all volunteers, are “burnt out after serving and working too many years without a break from their positions. The chair has acted and been responsibly involved for close to 25 years. Other members of the executive have served extended terms in positions within the society and society membership has dwindled to unsupportable levels.”

The report also states that interest and membership in twinning has “diminished significantly despite the best efforts of current twinning members. The extent of lack of interest is shown by the fact there were no paid twinning memberships in 2019 and the cancellation of the August exchange trip to Numata from Port Hardy. This cancellation was a direct result of a lack of interest from the community.”

According to the society, in its heyday it was customary to send as many as 15 delegates to Numata, at times led by a Port Hardy council representative and/or the Mayor.

“It is time to refresh the delivery of the twinning relationship as well engage alternative leadership options,” stated the report, adding that change is required to the delivery of the twinning relationship with Numata. “Council, who is signatory to the twinning agreement, must determine the next steps regarding the twinning delivery.”

The report also posed the question: Does Port Hardy desire to continue its twinning relationship with Numata?

“Should the answer be YES, then: how and who is best able or capable to deliver the twinning mandate given its current circumstances?”

Recommendation to Port Hardy council

The PHTS members stated they do not want to see the twinning relationship with Numata collapse. As such, they would like council to dissolve the current society structure, “and implement a project-based delivery, managed and led by town council and resources supported by community volunteers.”

The report was discussed at a Committee of the Whole meeting, and the committee recommended to council that the District of Port Hardy work towards “transitioning the current society structure to the district through a project-based approach under the Parks Recreation, Arts and Culture Committee (PRACC).”

What does that mean exactly?

According to PRACC Chair Fred Robertson, the transition is still in the very early stages at the moment, and the PRACC are in the middle of “looking at how we can make it work – I’m in favour of it, council sees a value in it, and we just need to figure out how exactly to approach it.”

Background on the society

The PHTS, a not for profit organization, was established in February of 2002 by members of the District of Port Hardy Economic Development Committee to manage the day to day twinning agreement signed between the towns of Numata, Japan and Port Hardy in 1994. The purpose of the Society was to strengthen and advance friendship of the two communities through the promotion of exchanges in the field of economy, culture, education and sports. Since 1994 delegations from Numata and Port Hardy have both hosted and travelled to each community, where individuals experienced local cultures and participated in local activities. Beyond these exchanges, the PHTS has promoted the Twinning relationship, raising awareness and soliciting interest of the public through events in Port Hardy, FILOMI days, regional fall fairs and establishing visual remembrances of its sister city relationship with Numata – such as the Torii Gate, the Japanese garden in Carrot Park as well as visual displays in and around Port Hardy.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter


Just Posted

Black Press file photo
RCMP seek suspect in Vancouver Island-wide crime spree

Crimes stretched from Deep Bay to Qualicum, Ladysmith, Chemainus and Youbou

Things are looking up for Vancouver Island as zero COVID-19 cases have been reported for the first time since October. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Island records zero new COVID-19 cases for the first time since October

For the first time since October, the province is reporting zero new… Continue reading

Black Press Media file
Port Hardy RCMP on the hunt for porta-pottie arsonist

The porta-potties were lit on fire early in the morning on June 13

Eke Me-Xi students enjoy a field trip to Malcolm Island. (Submitted photos)
Eke Me-Xi Learning Centre takes field trip to Malcolm Island

Once at Bere Point, students made themselves at home in the day-use area

Mount Waddington Regional Fall Fair logo
Mount Waddington Regional Fall Fair cancelled again due to COVID-19 restrictions

The 2022 fall fair is still scheduled to take place in Port Hardy

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

FILE – Most lanes remain closed at the Peace Arch border crossing into the U.S. from Canada, where the shared border has been closed for nonessential travel in an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Thursday, May 7, 2020, in Blaine, Wash. The restrictions at the border took effect March 21, while allowing trade and other travel deemed essential to continue. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Feds to issue update on border measures for fully vaccinated Canadians, permanent residents

Border with U.S. to remain closed to most until at least July 21

A portion of the George Road wildfire burns near Lytton, B.C. in this Friday, June 18, 2021 handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, BC Wildfire Service *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Blaze near Lytton spread across steep terrain, says BC Wildfire Service

Fire began Wednesday and is suspected to be human-caused, but remains under investigation

Blair Lebsack, owner of RGE RD restaurant, poses for a portrait in the dining room, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. Canadian restaurants are having to find ways to deal with the rising cost of food. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Canadian restaurateurs grapple with rising food costs, menu prices expected to rise

Restaurants are a low margin industry, so there’s not a lot of room to work in additional costs

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
Fort St. John man arrested after allegedly inviting sexual touching from children

Two children reported the incident to a trusted adult right away

A Lotto 6/49 ticket purchased in Parksville for the June 19, 2021 draw is a $3M winner. (Submitted photo)
Winning Lotto 6/49 ticket worth $3M purchased on Vancouver Island

Lottery prize winners have 52 weeks to claim jackpot

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Most Read