One year ago, on this very day, Anushavan Arts School opened its doors for community youth and schoolchildren. After a 28 years’ break, the school restarted its operations and began hosting children for national song and dance clubs, and the previously gloomy walls were decorated with children’s bright colored paintings.
Arts School renovation works started in December 2018, with the financial support from “Women for Development” NGO and Anushavan village municipality. As the result of 3 months’ hard works, 2 large dance halls of the cultural house were fully renovated and furnished, and this is where the drawing and dance clubs are taking place. The events hall in the same building also got fully renovated, furnished and equipped. The construction works for this project were fully implemented by the community members on voluntary basis.
The Arts School began its operations with only 41 youth attending the drawing and dance clubs, however the number of children has increased to 77 nowadays, and in addition to the two mentioned clubs, there is also dhol (national instrument) club taking place in the school. There are also children on the waiting list, who are waiting to the start of the new academic year. In addition to the main clubs, there is also amateur evening dance club for community youth. The opening of the Arts School has not only contributed to the restart of the community cultural life, but also created 5 new work places. It is planned to also open clay and chess clubs at the school in September, which will create 2 additional work places in turn.
Reflecting on the results and achievements of this past year, the Arts School director Manik Hakobyan has emphasized the fact that the school is already an established state institution, and the children receive diplomas upon graduation, which allows them to continue their further education in higher education Arts schools across Armenia. As the result of the one year operations of dance and drawing clubs, the children participated in numerous competitions, exhibitions and festivals and actively took part in all community events. Additionally, meetings with various representatives of Arts sphere were organized, including study visits to museums and sightseeing destinations around Shirak province. Currently, schoolchildren and teachers are engaged in organizational works – drawing club members are finishing their works dedicated to peace, with the goal of sending those to an international competition taking place in Belarus; dance club members are rehearsing for taking part in a concert dedicated to March 8 in Gyumri, and dhol club members are getting ready for their first ever performance in Yerevan.
“Among our biggest achievements, I would like to speak about the attitude of the community members towards the Arts School. They are following our works with great enthusiasm, and are taking great pride in the successes of our students.
People love the Arts School so much, that during the most recent community general meeting which took place on January 26th, which was attended by the majority of village residents, I was surprised to find out that among other urgent issues, the villagers
prioritized the heating issue of the Arts School, despite the fact that for many years the number one issue of our community used to be the issue of building the second water dam. There are many cases, when community residents hear the sounds of music when passing by the Arts School, and decide to enter the building and watch our dancers or little painters, and they become very inspired and encouraged with this. It’s very encouraging for us and at the same time this makes us more responsible and accountable to work harder and provide better results in order to fulfill the parents’ and community residents’ high expectations”, mentions Manik Vardanyan.
“Women for Development” NGO team also congratulates the staff and the children of the Arts School on the occasion of their one year anniversary. We are extremely happy to see the results of your dedicated and responsible work, and your caring attitude towards your students. We are extremely appreciative of the big support and close collaboration provided by the village municipality. We wish the 1 year old school many more happy years to celebrate, continued development and new achievements!