Historico-geographical review

Location: Shirak region, 25km from Gyumri
Population 336
Area 19.8

Arpeni is located in the north-west of the Republic of Armenia, on the northern foot of Shirak mountain chain, in 55km distance from marz center.
The village was founded in 1852 by the immigrants from Iridu village of Western Armenia’s Alashkert canton.
It carried the Turkish name Palutli until 1978. In the past it was also called Paletli, Paltli, Palutlu, Palut, Palutli. It was renamed Arpeni in 1978. The construction of one of the biggest churches in Ashotsk territory was finished in 1910, which later on, during the years of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics served as a warehouse and was almost completely destroyed during 1988 earthquake. It needs urgent restoration.
The village is situated in the mountain-valley at the height of 1970 m above sea level. Climate is mild, mountainous with long, cold winters and steady snow cover. Weather is very windy, while fogs and snowstorms often hit here.
The main occupation of the population in Arpeni is cattle breeding. They mainly breed cows, sheep and goats, animals and fowls (hens, seldom geese and ducks), sometimes pigs and rabbits.
Beekeeping is being developed in Arpeni too. Potato is the main source of cultivation in the village.
Horticulture isn’t enough developed here. A main issue for the village is the replacement of hail stations and the organization of some kind of manufacturing to create new workplaces in the village.
The school was founded in 1911, while the new two-story typical building was constructed in 1991. Since the year 1992 the house of culture started its activities in the community, while in 2012 the kindergarten was opened.
There is neither natural gas supply system, nor telephone connection in the village.
At present village has an area of 51,5 hectare area, while the population number is counted 410.
There are 88 households in the village. There is a school, a library and a medical point in the village.
The village has large supplies of drinking water formed due to natural springs.

Arpeni Community Center

A Community center was established in Arpeni in 2011 with the support of “Women for development” NGO. The center aimed to encourage the formation of healthy and peaceful lifestyle in the community assisting to the creation of a peaceful and healthy environment. On this purpose actions were taken to develop participatory approach and interest among Arpeni community members to create peace and peaceful conflict resolution culture, develop skills in leading healthy lifestyle and health protection among Arpeni community members; stimulate work towards the institutionalization of peaceable and healthy centers.

A group of activists was formed during the 2 years of the center’s existence who participate in the activities to reveal community’s primary issues and try to solve them.

With the initiative of “Women for Development” NGO and the “Community center” together with the village mayor, council members, school and kindergarten staff, as well as community members, Arpeni complex development plan 2013-2015 was developed. The strategic plan defines the main directions of community development for 3 years. It will become a guide in keeping the quality and high-level of community services, in promoting and increasing them. It will have great impact on the mobilization process of community members and on their participation in the revelation of community issues.

Implemented Social Projects


Our Community is Our Home

Arpeni poster

The goal of the project:
To support the improvement of the social-economic conditions of Arpeni community population.

Project duration – 3 years (in 3 stages)

Project total budget:  1.690.000 AMD

Community contribution: 491 111 AMD

NGO WFD contribution: 569 000 AMD

Fundraising: 630 000 AMD

Project outcome:

More than 70 families hold their large-scale events in the event hall for 200 persons, which is furnished and has elementary sanitary conditions.

Project impact:
The livelihood of Arpeni community population has significantly improved.



The project is implemented through assistance of Peace Corps Partnership Program (PCPP) in frames of the NGO “Women for Development” project “Rural Community Development” (2014 – 2016). The project is worked out by NGO WFD and Peace Corps volunteer Bobbie Seltzer.

Hairdressing poster

The goal of the project.

–  To improve the quality of life in four villages through the occupational training of several interested women and/or men.

– To provide opportunities for important services to be provided by villagers to villagers thereby keeping limited cash funds within the village and with village families.

Project duration:  7 months

Project total budget:  915.000 AMD

The project funds were raised through contribution of mainly USA citizens in the organized fundraising campaign.

Project outcome:

  • 4 young women have participated in 5-month training and received certificates. 3 more women and 1 young man received ToT training from the main participants

In 4 beneficiary communities (Arpeni, Torosgiugh, Tsoghamarg and Lanjik) the hairdressing service is established.