Thank you so much for joining us at the Sebastopol World Friends Friendship Celebration – Where Sushi Meets Borsch on Sunday, April 23 at St. Stephen’s Church in Sebastopol. Approximately 150 guests enjoyed the program and the harmony of sushi and borsch, SWF’s signature menu.
The highlight of this year’s event was the celebration of the 30th anniversary of Sebastopol’s sister city relationship with Chyhyryn, Ukraine. Mr. Dmytro Kushneruk, Consul General of Ukraine in San Francisco and Mr. Kevin O’Donnell of Sister Cities International joined us to celebrate the special anniversary, as did Sebastopol Vice Mayor, Diana Rich, Councilmember Jill McLewis, and former mayors Patrick Slayter and Sarah Gurney.
The representatives from Sonoma County Cranes for Ukraine, a project of Sonoma County Japanese American Citizens League presented a bundle of beautifully assembled 1,000 origami cranes to the people in Chyhyryn. The cranes were made by community members at various fold-in events that Sonoma County Cranes for Ukraine organized in partnership with SWF.
We also presented “Sebastopol World Friends’ Best Friends Award” to four honorees to thank them for their contribution to our efforts to support the people of Ukraine.
Patricia Deignan, SWF’s Chyhyryn Committee Chair expressed her gratitude to the community for the outpouring of support that we have received since the beginning of full scale Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. We also showed a moving video message from Friends of Chyhyryn expressing their appreciation for the funds we raised for them.
The cultural entertainment by Zoloti Maky Ukrainian Dance Ensemble and Tenten Taiko and Friends added excitement to the program.
Thank you attendees, volunteers, entertainers, presenters, honorees, donors and supporters for your continuing support of our motto “World Peace, One Friend at a Time”!