STEPANAKERT—Only three months after the 13th annual Armenia Fund Telethon raised $20.8 million for water projects in Artsakh, residents of Noragyugh village in the Askeran region of Artsakh now have regular access to clean drinking water thanks to a new 5km-long pipeline connecting every home in the village to the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic’s main water grid.
The project, financed by Armenia Fund’s French affiliate and Armenian entrepreneurs in Russia, has proceeded in multiple phases. With the completion of the pipeline and a distribution network, construction crews are now set to begin work on the last leg of the project–the rebuilding of three reservoirs as well as a deep-water well.
For many years Noragyugh’s pipeline was in a state of disrepair, with corroded pipes causing extensive water loss. The village received water once every two days, and only for two hours at a time.
“We have long waited for the day when water would flow into our homes,” says Mayor Edik Mardyan, reflecting a sentiment shared by all residents.
According to the project’s chief engineer, water volume will significantly increase once the improvements are fully completed.
“Throughout 2011, thousands of our donors will have the opportunity to see how their contributions help turn the slogan ‘Water Is Life’ into reality,” said Ara Vardanyan, the executive director of the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund. “Noragyugh is the latest example of this vital process.”
“The fact that there can be no life without water is even more pronounced in a village, where water is also a prerequisite for economic development,” stressed Bedros Terzian, the chairman of Armenia Fund’s French affiliate.
Established in 1966, Noragyugh is Askeran’s largest community, with a population of 1,510. Farming is its main occupation. The village has a modern school and a medical clinic as well as well-built roads.
Today, with the village’s water issue resolved, residents believe their community is poised for considerable economic growth in the years ahead.