ARS Social Services Brightens Thanksgiving for Families in Need
GLENDALE—The regional headquarters of the Armenian Relief Society (ARS) of Western USA in Glendale, Calif., was full of activity on November 25. Artsakh Republic President Bako Sahakian and his delegation first met the children invited by Social Services downstairs and later, the ARS members upstairs. The ARS Social Services ensured that clients in need would enjoy a better Thanksgiving holiday.
ARS of Western USA Regional Executive Co-Chairperson Maral Matossian, made welcoming remarks to the guests underscoring the ARS’s readiness to provide assistance, noting current ongoing ARS programs in Artsakh. Matossian reaffirmed that the ARS continues to meet the local needs, along with those in Armenia, Artsakh, Javakhk, Syrian Armenians and all over the world. She called upon everyone to contribute to the Armenia Fund Telethon for the completion of the construction of the Vartenis-Martakert highway.
Matossian also noted the ARS’s support for Artsakh repopulation efforts and programs to provide jobs to women at Karabakh Carpet factories, thus contributing to women’s empowerment and sustainability in the region.
President Sahakian conveyed the importance of the ARS not just as an appraisal of accomplishments in the homeland and beyond, but as a model to consider in the terms of ideology, humanitarian assistance, training and education. He remarked that he is proud of this organization of mothers and sisters, who with their very presence and approach bring brightness and beauty during Artsakh’s struggle. The President even promised to attend ARS’ 105th anniversary in Artsakh next year and to take the opportunity then jointly to develop new programs, which will benefit us for many years to come.
As concluding remarks, President Sahakian expressed his admiration and respect for the ARS for their commitment to Artsakh’s advancement.
After the President’s remarks, Matossian presented a memento to the President, on behalf of the Regional Executive, in appreciation and gratitude for his service to the people of Artsakh and his belief in the ARS.
Following the official remarks, Archbishop Barkev Martirossyan of the Artsakh Diocese was invited to perform the invocation and bless the table. The reception served as an opportunity to meet and greet.
Members of the delegation included Archbishop Barkev Martirossyan of the Artsakh Diocese, representative to Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian of the Western Prelacy, Reverend Vazken Atmajian, Armenia’s Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the United States Tigran Sargsyan, Permanent Representative of Artsakh to United States Robert Avetisyan, Artsakh Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Aghabekyan, Artsakh Minister of Health Haroutyun Koushkyan, Press Spokesperson of the President of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic Davit Babayan, ARS Central Executive Board Chairperson Vicky Marashlian and liaison to the Western USA Annie Kechichian, ARF Central Committee representative Dr. Vicken Yacoubian. Representatives of sister organizations, past ARS Central Executive and Regional Executive members, ARS chapters and guests were also in attendance.
Republic of Artsakh President Bako Sahakian’s visit to the ARS Regional Headquarters greatly motivated guests, and encouraged the revitalization of their efforts to work towards a stronger and more prosperous Artsakh.
This Thanksgiving season, the gracious support of ARS Social Services supporters helped brighten the holiday for families in need.
In the afternoon, Chamlian School Parent Support Committee members, along with students, had arrived at the ARS Glendale headquarters to distribute full course Thanksgiving meals to ten families most in need.
Thereafter, for the second straight year, Mr. & Mrs. Shahab and Nadia Shamsi and Jessica Vartoughian sponsored a special Thanksgiving event, including food and entertainment, for children of needy families. Thanks to their generosity, 100 frozen turkeys were distributed at the end of the program to the participating families.
The children were in good spirits as they welcomed President Bako Sahakian and his delegation with Armenian songs and traditional dance.
ARS Social Services was honored to once again participate in Congresswoman Judy Chu’s annual turkey donation program and Pasadena City Mayor Bill Bogaard’s Operation Gobble Gobble, through which Thanksgiving turkeys were distributed to families in the Pasadena community.
The ARS thanked all of their supporters who provide their assistance for the ARS local and international programs and urged them to continue to remember the families in need during this holiday season by sending tax-deductible contributions to the ARS at 517 W. Glenoaks Ave., Glendale, CA 91202 or through the Internet at arswestusa.org.
The Armenian Relief Society of Western USA, established in 1984 and with regional headquarters in Glendale, CA, has 26 chapters and more than 1,200 members in four western states. The ARS operates a Social Services Division and Child, Youth, and Family Guidance Center, and funds numerous youth programs, scholarships, and relief efforts. For further information, please visit arswestusa.org or call (818) 500-1343.