WATERTOWN, Mass.—As we conclude 2022 and begin to gear up for another year of humanitarian service, the Armenian Relief Society (ARS) of Eastern USA reflects on its activities and how the work of our membership and the support of our donors and friends allowed us to once again extend our healing hands to those who needed us the most by implementing and supporting humanitarian, educational, youth and health programs within our community, in the homeland and around the world.
We began the year by launching the “Share the Love” campaign and raised funds for the hot meal programs in Lebanon and Syria. With the generosity of our donors and members, we were able to provide much-needed hot meals to community members who are struggling to put food on their tables. Throughout the year, we supported the work of the Armenian Relief Cross of Lebanon and Syria by allocating additional financial assistance, so they could implement a series of programs in their respective regions to support the community, which has been facing major hardships in their countries.
For our youth, we organized a virtual Norian Youth Connect Program featuring a panel discussion on “Creativity in Challenging Times” and a lecture on the future of Armenians. In 2023, the ARS of Eastern USA will resume its program in-person and will soon announce the details of the Norian Youth Connect Program set to take place on March 4, 2023 at Columbia University in New York City.
As part of our yearly activities, we provided over $70,000 in scholarships to graduate and undergraduate students for their ambition, hard work and service to their community.
As longtime supporters of Camp Haiastan, the ARS of Eastern USA donated $100,000 during the organization’s 70th anniversary gala to support a series of renovation projects.
Furthermore, the ARS of Eastern USA continued to support the work of the Armenian National Education Committee and conducted an essay contest between day and one-day schools.
To support efforts in the homeland, our members and supporters sponsored 100 children of Artsakh’s fallen heroes, a program that our organization has implemented since the war first began in 1988. During the year, we continued our sponsorship of the Soseh Kindergarten of Khndzristan; supported the ARS Akhourian Mother and Child Health and Birthing Center; and sponsored gifts to students who have excelled in their studies through the ARS Outstanding Student Program. As usual, we also supported the community of Javakhk by providing much-needed assistance to the region for their ongoing needs.
Due to the ongoing situation in Artsakh and the dire need for medical attention needed for our homeland’s defenders, the ARS of Eastern USA continued to financially support the lifesaving work of the Artsakh Rehab Center.
In 2022, the ARS of Eastern USA also gained a new chapter in Vermont—the ARS “Noor” Chapter. The new members took an oath and joined the greater ARS family to continue the work that began more than a century ago. The ARS of Eastern USA also held its 101st convention in North Carolina, one year after the establishment of that state’s chapter.
We have confidence, pride and passion in our work, which we practice at a high level of excellence. It’s all due to the generosity and commitment of our members, chapters, supporters and friends who allow us to make a difference for so many people in our communities and around the world.
More than $450,000 was allocated for all the humanitarian and community-centered programs mentioned above, surpassing last year’s allocations.
On behalf of the ARS of Eastern USA’s Regional Executive Board, we would like to extend our gratitude to all for being generous with their time, support and dedication to foster the ARS’ programs. We are praying that the Lachin Corridor, currently blocked by Azerbaijan, will be opened and peace will be restored in Artsakh. We ask that you join us in that prayer and support the humanitarian work of the ARS during 2023, so we can extend our hands to those who need us the most.