Success stories

New Hope in an Old Village

Pokr Vedi village is home to 3,000 souls, Christians nestled in the valley of Noah’s Mount Ararat between Turkey, Russia and Iran. Residents of the Armenian village remember ancestors brutally exiled and annihilated by the Ottomans 100 years ago—a horror still unrecognized by Turkey, whose closed border lies just a few miles away. Just 25 years ago these villagers lived under the Soviet state and have struggled to provide for their families ever since. 

How does one subsist with no resources to cultivate his land or her business? How does one recover faith after genocide and atheism? 

 

Why Breast Cancer Claims the Lives of More Armenian Women

When a mobile medical clinic arrived in the tiny village of Arpunk offering free health screenings to women, they found Karine Petrosyan. Day and night, pain gripped her abdomen. Massive fibroids were silently consuming her uterus. Karine needed emergency surgery. In this remote corner of Armenia, there was little to no access to routine cancer screenings until Jinishian began a reproductive health program in 2016. Without early screenings such as mammograms, breast cancer can be deadly, making mortality in Armenia among the highest in the world—a devastating toll that Jinishian is determined to reverse, one village at a time. The Jinishian Memorial Program chose to partner with Maple Leaf medical services to focus on the area around Vardenis first—a deeply poor, volatile border zone with Azerbaijan where birth rates are low. In two dozen visits, the clinics reached nearly 600 women like Karine, 90 percent of whom had some form of gynecological disorder. Karine was swiftly transferred to the hospital, where doctors removed her invasive fibroids. She was far from an isolated case. Hers was one of sixteen vital surgeries. Women desperate for medical intervention finally had an advocate with the expertise to shepherd them through Armenia’s complex healthcare system.

Aqavik's Dream

Tsapatagh had a multi-purpose community center which was almost ruined. The building used to have a health center, a post office, a sewing workshop, a municipality office, musical, drowing and dance classrooms, etc. In 1989, when Armenians fled from Azerbaijan to their Motherland, some of them settled in Tsapatagh, that used to be inhabited mainly with Azerbaijanis. The new comers found the community center looted and partially collapsed. Despite its deteriorated condition, the bulding still served to the community for a few years also. Finally the community center was closed, as further exploition became dangerous. 

Since 2013 JMF is implementing Vardenis Development Initiative project in rural communities of Vardenis sub-region in Gegharqunik marz. Tsapatagh is one of the 23 communities targeted by JMF. In late 2015 Tsapatagh community activists came up with an ambitious community enhancement project, named «Community cultural center creation». The project leaders firmly insisted that the community is willing to revive the cultural life in the village and they will do their best to accomplish the project, to recover the art hub at the former multi-purpose community center.

Beyond Expectations

Vartkes Kassouni, Orange, CA--Going to Armenia as a tourist has its rewards, however going there with a mission has its special and unexpected rewards. Mrs. Kassouni and I had the privilege of going there in June and connecting with the programs of Jinishian Foundation… A year ago, after some 53 years, when I first met Mr. Jinishian in New York, I reconnected with him by way of volunteering to serve in the promotion of its programs in California, and then traveling to see with my own eyes…

Whether you think you can, or you think you can't - you're right ...

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can't - you're right.”, Henry Ford.

Khachatur was only 14 years old when he first joined the Jinishian Memorial Foundation’s school debate club project in his school #190 in Yerevan. This is one of the 130 schools where the JMF established debate clubs within its Civil Society and Education program.
 A teenager, who was born in Lebanon where his musician parents were in a concert tour, and a grandchild of a Musa Dagh survivor realized and firmly believed that he is the one among the Armenian youth who is able and responsible for personal contribution in development of Armenia towards its path in becoming a democratic country and a country of a dream for all Armenians. The participation in debate club was a great opportunity for development of leadership, critical thinking, and public speaking skills vital for realization of his beliefs.

A Big Step Forward

The JMF has been implementing the Youth Engaged in Civil Society project since 2004. The project is aimed at fostering democracy and developing civically conscious and socially responsible citizens in Armenia through the creation and development of Debate Clubs for secondary and high school students. About 130 established debate clubs involve students aged 14-17, who later use debate as a tool for being engaged in the civil society development process. The project provided knowledge to high schools students about key issues related to the development of civil society, democracy and human rights, building communication and analytical thinking skills that will permit them to more actively participate in the development of Armenian society. The debate clubs, organized in the schools as extracurricular activities, also add value to the education system. The initiative builds links between youth, the NGO sector, and governmental agencies through a civic initiative seminar series and round-table discussions.

Hip Dysplasia Early Prevention among Children in Armenia

“When in summer 2013 I gave birth to my daughter Karine, all of us were very happy and excited to welcome our first child into our family”.  All of a sudden at the maternity home I was told that Karine had hip dysplasia. It was quite a stressful period of life for our family. 

Hip dysplasia is the medical term for instability, or looseness of the hip joint that affects thousands of children each year. When a baby is diagnosed with developmental dysplasia of the hip and treated early, the outcome is usually excellent. If treatment is delayed, the further steps are more complex and with less chance of success. In the framework of the JMF implemented health project numerous ultrasound doctors were trained to diagnose various forms of hip dysplasia via examination of infants at maternity homes; something which was not practiced before.

Bringing Smile to Armenian Children on Christmas Eve

Christmas was rapidly approaching and all children were dreaming about gifts. Unfortunately, many impoverished children in Armenia do not experience the excitement of opening presents at Christmas season because many poor families cannot even afford to purchase basic necessities for their children let along Christmas gifts. Christmas is a time of despair for these children who have few reasons for enjoyment and it brings additional psychological problems for children who feel the meaning of being disadvantaged. Generous people responded at Christmas time, when even the strongest of spirits need a little bit of help. In December 2013 with the support of individual donors the Jinishian Memorial Foundation (JMF) reached children from 5 marginalized villages of Vardenis region, Gegharquniq marz and children from Gyumri city, Shirak marz where harsh social and economic conditions were intensely reflected and conditioned by a number of factors such as severe climate conditions, unemployment and migration. The JMF delivered Christmas packages to about 302 children of 2-16 years old and each child was provided with a personal gift package which included a package of sweets, toys, warm pajama and warm blanket. The children were all cheerful and the looks on their faces were enough to show how much they appreciated the Christmas gifts the JMF had brought for them. Giving warmth, love and hope, that’s what Christmas is all about.

Benefits for the Years to Come

A culture of basic amelioration of land/soil before cultivation, which is common in developed countries, has not been formed among farmers of Armenia which use only traditional fertilizers available in the market.

To promote a new farming culture among farmers of Armenia in 2012 the JMF piloted Soil Analysis on Fertilizers and Chemicals Project to experiment the advantages of properly ameliorated and cultivated lands versus to the lands undergoing traditional amelioration and cultivation for vegetables growing. Project had experimental and meantime educational nature. It disclosed contemporary methodologies and approaches increasing the quality and quantity of the agricultural output and preventing the soil from corrosion on a long run.

Support to Farmers

It’s already more than twenty years that Aram Mkhitaryan is involved in agriculture and stockbreeding in the Pokr-Vedi community of Ararat marz. He cultivates both his own and rented plots.  The main source of income comes from the sales of corn, wheat, barley and grapes. The sales of beef and pork also bring in an income for him.

Aram Mkhitaryan started his business from a small farm with low incomes and lots of social problems. Beginning from 2010 he started to cooperate with the CARD AgroCredit UCO CJSC. Provided loans enabled the expansion of the farm and increase of incomes. From the year 2011 CARD AgroCredit started to provide loans through the Jinishian Memorial Foundation, and Aram received 3 loans in total. The low interest rate loan was an additional chance for Aram and other farmers to improve and expand their business, and agricultural sector of Armenia has benefited a lot from this collaborative work. Aram mentions, that he became inspired for new ideas and programs and decided to rent and cultivate additional lands.

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