Border communities benefit from Paros Foundation’s expanded, renovated kindergartens

Children at the Achajur kindergarten offered a short performance for opening day

TAVUSH—Children in the Tavush border communities of Achajur and Varagavan now benefit from newly renovated and expanded kindergartens. These important projects were implemented through The Paros Foundation’s Prosperity on the Border initiative over the course of the last 18 months.  

In the village of Achajur, an overcrowded kindergarten meant that almost 100 children that were of kindergarten age were unable to attend and receive the benefits of early education. To address this need, The Paros Foundation agreed to completely reconfigure and reconstruct the second floor of the large building that houses the kindergarten. A new dining room and three large classrooms to accommodate the addition of these new children were successfully added. The rebuild included a more powerful heating system for the entire kindergarten, new bathrooms, new windows and exterior work. Work on the kindergarten at Achajur was made possible through the generous support of benefactors Ara and Valarie Cherchian. 

In the village of Varagavan, only one small portion of the building that housed the village kindergarten was able to be used for a partial day program for 19 children in the village. More than 40 children are of kindergarten and preschool age, but none of the children in this community were able to benefit from a full day early education program. This large, two story building needed a complete rebuild including roof, water, electrical, sewer and gas systems. New windows, doors, stairs, flooring, kitchens and bathrooms were installed as part of The Paros Foundation’s Prosperity on the Border initiative. Work on the kindergarten at Varagavan was made possible through donations received primarily from the “Cocktails on the Terrace” fundraiser generously sponsored by Gregory and Kelley Badishkanian at their home.  

Focus on Children Now partnered on both of these kindergarten projects to provide high quality playgrounds and furniture for the children.

“The effects of the July attacks, COVID-19 and the Artsakh War have weighed heavily on the children in these communities,” said Paros Foundation’s executive director Peter Abajian. “Returning to beautifully renovated, safe and inviting kindergartens will dramatically improve these communities’ return to in-person education and significantly benefit these important villages and their residents in the long-run.”

The Paros Foundation was launched in 2006 and has implemented more than $9 million worth of projects in Armenia through its unique model of philanthropy and community partnership. These projects are located throughout the country—with the majority of work focused in Gyumri and in the Tavush Region, along the border with Azerbaijan. Thanks to the generous support of Paros founder and chairman Roger Strauch, all administrative expenses are underwritten by him and his family, allowing 100-percent of donor contributions to be allocated in their entirety to the designated projects.

Ribbon cutting ceremony at the kindergarten in Achajur including Tavush governor Hayk Chobanyan and staff from the Paros Foundation and Focus on Children Now.
This article is a press release submitted to the Armenian Weekly. If your organization has news it would like to submit to the paper for consideration, please email us at
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1 Comment

  1. The Paros Foundation is a remarkable organization. My family has worked with them for over two years and I have never encountered a group as transparent and efficient as them. They accomplished an amazing volume of work(look at their website) with a modest staff. Their buying power for reconstruction and renovation projects is unmatched. Every dollar you donate will go farther and being fully accountable. If you are from the diaspora and looking to help invigorate border and rural communities , Paros will be a great partner. Their executive director, Peter Abajian, is a devoted servant of the mission to strengthen our rural communities. God bless this organization in its journey.

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