WALTHAM, Mass.—The 83rd Annual Convention of the Armenian Youth Federation, Youth Organization of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (AYF-YOARF) Eastern Region United States took place in Waltham, Mass. on Dec. 26-30, with 31 delegates representing the chapters of the Eastern Region, eight advisors, eight guests, and seventeen representatives of our sister organizations and neighboring regions.
Guest representatives included ungerouhi Heather Krafian, on behalf of the Armenian Relief Society (ARS), who discussed the many projects in and out of our homeland. Unger Hayg Oshagan, chair of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) Central Committee, discussed the investments the organization makes in its youth and its many programs, not only overseas, but in our own backyards. Unger Oshagan discussed the significance of maintaining the organization’s successful programs and strengthening new directions and changes that could take place. ARF advisor to the AYF CEntral Executive, ungerouhi Sarine Adishian, stressed that the organization’s agenda is the convention’s to create, and that change and adapting to it is fundamental to the AYF-YOARF.
Guest Representatives also included Baron Dave Hamparian of AYF Camp Haiastan, editor of the Armenian Weekly unger Rupen Janbazian, Michael Varadian of the AYF Governing Body, yeghpayr Razmik Banossian of Homenetmen Eastern Region, Tsoleen Sarian and unger Dikran Khaligian representing the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA), a video conference with unger Sako Mkrtchian of the ARF Bureau Office of Youth Affairs, and six representatives from the Western United States and Canada AYFs.
The delegates of the Annual Convention, the highest body of the organization, reviewed and analyzed the work carried out by the chapters and committees of 2016, discussed new and unique goals of the organization, and set resolutions preparing the organization’s agenda, regionally and internationally for 2017. Discussions included Syrian-Armenian Relief, the Armenian Cultural Association of America (ACAA) Artsakh Fund’s Arajamough redevelopment project, AYF Internship in Armenia, our fallen soldiers and Artsakh heroes, the current state and future of Javakhk, membership, junior members, the newly founded Manhattan “Moush” and Bedford chapters, AYF Camp Haiastan, ANCA, and more.
For each day of the convention, delegates started their meetings at 8 a.m. and ended past midnight to accomplish their goals and meet the convention’s detailed agenda. Support from local organizations included a kebab dinner at the Papken Suni Agoump, hosted by the ARS Cambridge “Shushi” and Watertown “Leola Sasoui” chapters, as well as homemade choreg and cheese gift bags from the ARF Boston “Sardarabad” gomidehutiun.
The 83rd annual convention presented the AYF-YOARF many new resolutions and goals to accomplish in the future—be it in the upcoming year or distant plan; regionally and in Armenia. The newly-elected 2017 AYF-YOARF Central Executive consists of Sosy Bouroujian (Washington D.C.), Kenar Charchaflian (Worcester), Avedis Keshgegian (Philadelphia), Nairi Khachatourian (Greater Boston), Garo Tashian (Providence), Peter Tashjian (Philadelphia), and Araxie Tossounian (Detroit).