During the visit to the Kirants community of Tavush marz, the members charity organizations’ consortium conducted needs assessment with community members and the management applying a participatory approach. Karine Baghdasaryan, Program Officer of the World Council of Churches Armenia Round Table Foundation also participated in the meeting. One of the goals of the visits and needs assessment was to enable the village to change its life through various development projects in Kirants.
During the meeting with the Consortium participants, Kamo Shahinyan, the mayor of Kirants community and the villagers emphasized that they did not want "help", but "Support our vision to become reality," Shahinyan emphasized. In response to the question of what would they like: a factory or a family business, the second was chosen unanimously, as this way people create their own income, develop their households. The group also visited the village school and garden.
Threats and Opportunities
This nine-class school in Kirants is not licensed and can be closed as it is an adapted building and is 3rd class damaged. Most of the villagers are forced to take children to Ijevan (Capital of Tavush Region). It’s highly popssible that the school will either be upgraded by the state program or new one will be built. The school needs Russian language and physical education teachers. The high school is in N. Tsakhkavan community, which creates problems related to the travel costs and attendance. There is no kindergarten and pre-school.
The people consider horticulture as an important branch, new gardens are planted. The problem is the lack of fences, which lets the livestock enter new planted gardens and damage the seedlings. Planting again and harvesting takes another five years. There is a desire to expand gardens, palms and strawberry fields, cultivate kiwi, persimmon and other high-quality crops, as well as start dried fruit production. Almond cultivation is traditional and profitable. The residents consider tobacco cultivation promising.
Irrigation problems are solved by 70%, there are no distribution points, and internal irrigation network.
In the village there is a need for veterinary, milk and meat storage facilities. There are 15 beekeepers, there is a need for a honeycomb equipment. Many people expressed willingness to start beekeeping. There will be no problem with sales as the honey quality is high. The proposal was to establish a small production plant for fuel-briquettes using local manure and forests.
Due to the lack of kindergarten and pre-school, young women have no opportunity to work. 17 young families have housing problems. The village has no gas supply. There is no club or other place for leisure.
Support Programs Also for Navur Community
Tavush Consortium members are also planning to carry out development programs also in Navur community of Tavush region. "We will be the 12th in 11 organization-Consortium that will support Navur community," Harutyun Manucharyan, Mayor Berd consolidated Community said at a meeting with Consortium representatives. Navur managet and the village initiative group also attended the meeting. Aram Nikoyan, manager of Navur and the village initiative group presented the needs and specifications of the community, after which the Consortium members clarified the issues related to their areas of interest during a Q&A session.
The Consortium is comprised of the World Council of Churches Armenia Round Table Foundation, the Armenian Missionary Association of America, Shen Foundation, the Children of Armenia Fund (COAF), “Development Principles” NGO, Fund for Armenian Relief, World Vision Armenia, "Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU), Armenian Caritas and Diaconia.
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