Sister City Student Exchange Program


 Dubbo has active Sister City relationships with two international cities and two Australian cities:

  • Minokamo , Japan (June 1989)  
  • Wujiang China (June 1995) 
  • Newcastle, NSW (March 1995)
  • A friendship link with Warringah, Sydney was established in October 1994.

Wellington has a Sister City relationship with Toyama/Osawano, Japan (August 1992)

Sister City relations bring excellent mutual benefits in the areas of trade, tourism and cultural exchange. 

On a global level, the Sister City program is generally recognised as an important means to build international goodwill and to further global social and economic development based on co-operation at the local level.

Dubbo Regional Council runs a reciprocal student exchange program with our two Asian sister cities, Minokamo and Wujiang. Each year in July and August, DRC welcomes ten students and 2 chaperones from Minokamo, and  fourteen students and 2 chaperones from Wujiang for the annual student exchange visits.   In the September/October school holidays two groups of specially selected high school students and their chaperones visit Japan and Minokamo; and Wujiang in China as Dubbo Regional Councils representatives on the sister city student exchanges.    

The advantages of Council’s sister city student exchanges when compared to other overseas trips for students and chaperone leaders are:

  • Its very affordable - in 2019 the cost to each participant for at 12-14 day visit was $2,800 plus spending money as the visit is subsidies by DRC
  • Unique travel opportunities as all participants live with a local family in Minokamo and Wujiang and attend school with their host student, immersing them in the local culture.    
  • Dubbo Regional Council has several years experiences in organising reciprocal exchanges; is responsible for all aspects of the visit including travel arrangements and provides the successful applicants with cultural and language training prior to their exchange visit.
  • It also offers the Dubbo exchange participants and local families the opportunity to home host students and chaperones from Minokamo and Wujiang when they visit Dubbo in July and August.
  • Minokamo exchange includes side trips around Tokyo city and to Tokyo Disneyland. The Wujiang exchange includes half day visit to Shanghai Disneyland and a three day visit to Beijing (includes trip to great wall, Ming Dynasty Tomb and Forbidden city).   

“The Wujiang student exchange was an excellent way to experience another culture and to make new friendships that will last for a lifetime. This trip was the high point of my year and an amazing adventure. I  will never forget the memories of visiting that breathtaking country.” 2019 Wujiang Student -  Angus MacKenzie

"The Minokamo exchange was a wonderful experience, the people were extremely welcoming, I believe I have made friends for life.  Japanese culture is very interesting and I would love to go back one day.  I would recommend this program. "  2019 Minokamo Student - Tyerell Ferguson

"Visiting Minokamo in 2019 was a truly memorable experience.  Watching the student from Dubbo completely immerse themselves in the everyday culture and with their host families was really humbling.  Our group was lucky enough to be part of the 30th anniversary between the Sister Cities which provided a unique experience to the overall trip.  From the welcoming barbeque to climbing Inuyama Castle, the Minokamo exchange was an authentic and fantastic way to encounter Japan!"  Minokamo Chaperone - Alice McKechni

"Visiting China was an amazing experience.  The rich and vibrant culture was unbelievable.  The trip certainly enabled our students to see how different and diverse the Chinese culture and way of life is.  It was definitely inspirational and a fantastic opportunity to undertake both as a student and teacher."  Wujiang Chaperone - Craig Turner



Due to the Coronavirus,  Dubbo Regional Council's 2022 student exchange visits to Minokamo in Japan and Wujiang in China has been cancelled.   Council continues to monitor official government advice on overseas travel and border restrictions and will recommence the student exchange program as soon as it is practical to do so.  When applications open, interested students and adults (wishing to accompany the students as chaperone) will be able to submit an application via the links below: - 

Student application

Chaperones application

Last Edited: 12 May 2022

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