BY VICTORIA MARKARIAN
During the ARS Oakland “Erepouni” Chapter’s Annual Mother/Daughter Tea on May 22, 2016, the chapter pledged that a specified amount of proceeds would go toward obtaining winter boots for children in the outlying provinces of Armenia. This October, that pledge became a reality when Chapter Chairperson Nora Shirikian, Vice-Chairperson Nellie Azizian, and member Aro Sadakian who were in Armenia, with the help of a local benefactor, ordered 102 pairs of top-quality boots to be made by a local shoe manufacturer for distribution to five border villages in the Tavoush province of Armenia: Dovegh, Perkaper, Kirants, Koti and Voskevan, which are villages where daily living is in threat of Azeri bombardments.
Children from the ages of 4-12 years old gathered in each village’s headquarters. ARS members were accompanied with ARS Armenia Regional Executive Chairperson Diana Hovsepian, Vice-Chairperson Hamest Sassounian, and Co-Mayor of the Tavoush region when the boots were distributed. Additionally, backpacks with school supplies were distributed to youngsters, who missed out on receiving boots.
The experience was a gratifying and emotional one for ARS members and residents of the villages, and a mission very much accomplished.
The ARS Oakland “Erepouni” Chapter thanks all of its supporters, donors, contributors, volunteers, and all those who have supported the chapter throughout the years in ensuring that the chapter continues its humanitarian assistance worldwide.