A project, which succeeded to mobilize the village community and people, who have never even been there…
Arpeni* is one of the remote villages of Shirak province, facing all the main issues the rest of Armenian villages undergo, and one of the 8 villages of the province, where “Women for Development” NGO is implementing its community development project.
Several months ago, with only 5-6 Arpeni community volunteers’ efforts, “Our Community is Our Home” project was written as the result of the capacity development trainings. The project’s goal was to furnish and to purchase dishes for the community events hall. With the active work and dedication of the volunteers, it became possible to mobilize the entire community, and more than 50 families participated in the organized fundraiser. 275 000 AMD was raised, and another 275 000 AMD was contributed by WFD NGO. 26 tables and 14 benches were bought for furnishing the events hall.
Increased participation, participatory approaches in decision making, community mobilization, etc. These terms are now very familiar and in some way even very fancy. Presently, community mobilization and increased participation are number one demands for all international organizations implementing community development projects. However, to be completely honest, it is worth mentioning that not always are local and international organizations successful in achieving these goals by really contributing to community mobilization through reaching tangible results in the process of raising and resolving the community issues in participatory way.
And here comes another pleasant surprise….
Only a few days befor Christmas we have been informed that Zhirayr Edilyan initiated fundraising for purchasing the necessary dishes for Arpeni events hall. 26 individuals participated in the fundraiser – people, who have never been in this village, however expressed a will to have their contribution. With the funds raised, dishes for serving meals to 200 people were purchased.
On behalf of ‘Women for Development” NGO and Arpeni village population, we express our gratitude to all the contributors for their support to the project.
Gohar Markosyan President “Women for development” NGO
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*Come meet the people of Arpeni and tour the village. See what rural Armenian life is like, sample homemade foods and buy their handicraft creations. Join us at the Old Arpeni Village Festival on Saturday, June 28th, 2014. (Like us on facebook https://www.facebook.com/OldArpeniVillageFestival.)