Twinning

Twinning with Foreign Cities
Twinning with the Italian city of Orvieto, in the Umbria region.
 
It was at the beginning of the third term of the Ta' Kercem Local Council (towards the end of 2001), when Mayor Joe Grima began searching for a foreign locality to initiate and eventually sign a twinning agreement with. With the help of Fr Reuben Micallef and Fr Roberto Gauci, who were doing their studies in Rome, the council approached the Comune of the city of Orvieto, a city in the province of Terni, in the region of Umbria.
 
The administration of Orvieto immediately showed their interest to start the necessary contacts between the two localities, and invited the Mayor to visit Orvieto. The Mayor welcomed this invitation, and visited Italy in February 2002. When in Rome, the Mayor met with Fr Reuben and Fr Roberto who made an appointment with the Comune di Orvieto, which also became the first municipal meeting in the Palace of Orvieto. The meeting was conducted by the Deputy Mayor of the city, Sandro Mocio. Afterwards, the delegation also met with the Mayor, Stefano Cimicchi. During both meetings it was clear that both sides wanted to reach this twinning agreement. In April 2002, Mayor Cimicchi made his first visit to Ta' Kercem. During this week-long visit, the Mayor had first hand experience to meet the kind hearted people of Ta' Kercem.
 
The contacts continued to strengthen when in November 2002, when the Councillor from the Comune di Orvieto, Sandro Gulino, attended a conference in Gozo. During his visit he also had the opportunity to visit the locality and also to strengthen the link with our island.
 
 The year 2003 is the year that saw the dream of the Local Council become a reality. In February 2003, a Council delegation made up of the Mayor, Joe Grima, Deputy Mayor, Peter Sciberras, Councillor and the Executive Secretary visited Orvieta, and the signing of a Pact of Friendship was signed between the two Councils.
 
Since then, until July 2003, the Council had obtained the necessary approval of the Maltese Government to sign the actual twinning. The Council also applied and was accepted to receive funding from the European Union..
 
The official ceremony of the signing of the twinning was held in Ta' Kercem, on Thursday, 10 July 2003. Present for the signing ceremony was the President of the Comune of Orvieto, Signor Evasio Gialletti along with the Louis Mancinelli Band and a delegation from Orvieto. Also present were the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Hon. Anton Tabone, the Minister of Justice and Home Affairs, the Hon Dr. Tonio Borg, Minister for Gozo, the Hon Giovanna Debono, Canon Fr Francis Debrincat, representatives of all organizations of the village, together with a large crowd of residents who attended a wonderful programme of activities. The St Gregory Band Club also participated. During this ceremony the devolution ceremony was also held, wherein the Kercem Local Council was handed a piece of land on which to build a new administrative building. During the same ceremony, the 50th anniversary of the establishment of Kercem Ajax FC was also commemorated. The Gieħ Kercem tribute was also awarded to the widow of Joseph Micallef (who died in an accident during voluntary work at the Parish Church of Ta' Kercem, in February 2003), and also to Michelaneglo Grech (one of the founders of Kercem Ajax FC.). A square in the neighbourhood was also named after the city of Orvieto and a marble plaque was uncovered to mark these event.
 
The festivities connected with this occasion came to an end in December 2003. A group of 130 residents from Ta' Kercem visited Italy. The group was led by the Mayor and the Councillors. The Parish Priest of Ta' Kercem and the St Gregory Band were also in attendance.
 
Twinning with a local town - Floriana (Malta)
The Local Council was the first Council in Gozo who also signed a twinning agreement with a locality from Malta - Floriana. Following this twinning, both Local Councils agreed upon several similarities that exist between the two locations, which are a means to move both localities closer and also to strengthen their friendship and commitment. The twinning agreement was signed in the two respective localities, in Floriana on Monday 31 March (national holiday), while that in Ta' Kercem on Saturday 5 July 2008, on the occasion of Ta' Kercem Day .
 
On both occasions, several residents from both localities attended the ceremonies. The Floriana ceremony was held at E.S. Tonna Square and the Ta' Kercem one was held at Orvieto Square. The agreement was signed by the Mayors Joe Grima and Nigel Holland respectively.