Tag Archives: save the children

On 15 November, a social enterprise that is running a refrigeration unit was officially opened at Yerevan State College #2 through the EU-funded and Save the Children-implemented “Social Innovations for the Vocational Education and Employability of Young People with Disabilities” (SIVEE) project.

ARS_8071This is the second enterprises officially opened within the scope of the SIVEE. The main objective of SIVEE is to promote social innovation in Armenia’s vocational education and training (VET) sector to create equal employment opportunities for young people with disabilities. SIVEE has selected 7 VET colleges and innovative social enterprises (SE) were established in 5 of them. Each SE will hire at least 5 employees with disabilities, employing a total 25 young people. 40 students with disabilities received vocational training at Yerevan State College #2, and five of them became staff of the refrigeration unit, filling the positions of storage facilities manager, administrative assistant, accountant, guard and driver. Managing a very large unit of frozen products will provide the college with revenue to be spent on expanding services, hiring new staff, and acquiring new products to store.

ARS_7975The opening of the social enterprise was attended by Irina Movsesyan, Project Officer from the EU Delegation to Armenia, who transmitted the EU’s commitment to continue supporting VET: ‘The EU was the first donor organisation to address VET and relevant reforms in Armenia. The EU has been working in this sector since 2004, and now there is a new programme: “Better Qualifications for Better Jobs”. This will run from 2017-2019 and have a global budget of €15.2 million, financed under the European Neighbourhood Instrument (ENI). The programme seeks to improve efficiency in the Armenian labour market and the employability of its workforce, with a particular emphasis on agricultural employment. Despite improvements, more needs to be done in this area to make the system more flexible and able to meet labour market requirements’.

ARS_8011Vahram Mkrtchyan, the Armenian Deputy Minister of Education and Science, thanked all partners for supporting Armenia’s VET sector: ‘Years ago there were special schools in Armenia for children with disabilities, established in the Soviet Union to separate people with disabilities and provide separate educational programmes. That legacy persisted, but now all of Armenia is shifting towards inclusive education. Now our policy is that every social group should be included in society. SIVEE has achieved tangible results towards this goal’.

On 1 June 2016, the Head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, Ambassador Piotr Świtalski, attended the “Voices for Children” open air event organised in Lovers’ Park in Yerevan alongside Armenian state authorities, EU member state ambassadors, and the US Ambassador to Armenia.
Save the Children Armenia had organised the event to mark International Children’s Day. The occasion was also used to launch two new EU-funded projects: “Community-based Services for Children with Disabilities” and “Social Innovations for Vocational Education and Employability of Young People with Disabilities”.
ARS_5991During the opening ceremony of the event, Ambassador Świtalski was asked to make a wish for Armenian children: ‘My wish is very simple, dear children. I wish you lasting peace and love; I wish you to be aware of your rights. These are not small rights of small people, these are real rights. Enjoy your holiday!’
ARS_5979The Armenian Minister of Diaspora, Hranush Hakobyan, congratulated all the children present as well as those across the country: ‘Today we celebrate the most important festivity in the world; the brightest, most glorious, happiest day. Congratulations! I am so proud that, back in 1996, I was the one who put forward special legislation about the Rights of the Child in Armenia’.
After the brief formal opening ceremony, all the children and other guests were invited to enjoy a range of educational activities, discussions, mini-fora and performances by the Cross of Armenian Unity NGO. Volunteers from Save the Children informed guests about children’s rights through a special “child-to-child” methodology.
The event also featured an exhibition, which presented new and ongoing initiatives of Save the Children and its partners. Moreover, there was the launch of the aforementioned two new projects, several presentations, and interactive performances. The Media Initiative Centre, “Unison” NGO, “Paros” Chamber Choir and the “Miqayel Voskanyan and friends” band joined Save the Children and provided a pleasant and unique atmosphere throughout the event.