The Vermont National Guard will be forming a State Partnership with the African Republic of Senegal.
Vermont’s Adjutant General, Major General Michael Dubie, announced the partnership this afternoon.
Dubie said the objective of State Partnerships is to foster democratic ideals through training exercises, internships and visits by civic leaders.
Vermont has had a partnership with Macedonia since 1995.
Dubie pointed to the success of that relationship as one reason why Vermont was chosen by the Pentagon to partner with Senegal.
He said both Vermont and Senegal will benefit from the partnership.
(Dubie) “We have a very vibrant Senegalese diaspora in Burlington. We plan on reaching out to that community of Senegalese that are in Chittenden County, and we are hoping that the benefit to Vermont will be, we will be able to impart upon some of the things that we do right, and the Senegalese will be able to impart on us what they do right. But more importantly it will make us all more culturally aware of a part of the world that often is not concentrated on in America.”
Dubie said that Senegal is an ideal partner because the country is a stable democracy with a robust economy.
He will travel to Senegal in two weeks to meet with military and civilian officials.
According to Dubie, the partnership works both ways, and Senegalese citizens and soldiers will be spending time in Vermont.
Dubie added that Vermont will continue its partnership with Macedonia.