Life is hard for Armenian families in Javaghk. Jobs are meager, weather and terrain are severe and opportunities for income limited.
It is even harder for Sveta and Samvel Maranjyans from the town of Aghlqalaq. The children live with their mother and grandmother. The family’s only income is childcare allowance and the grandmother’s pension that equals 100 USD per month. However things have changed and new hope knocked at their door when Children of Armenia Sponsorship Program (CASP), a program of the Women’s Guild Central Council of the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern), started supporting them through the Fund for Armenian Relief.
Sveta is in the 7th grade and Samvel is in the 9th grade at the local public school. They excel in their studies — Sveta in humanities and Samvel in natural science. They are now able to pursue their talents and passions too. Samvel likes to paint, he even showed his works recently at local art exhibitions. Sveta enjoys embroidery.
“The children are my happiness, they are my hope, and they help me a lot. I am so happy to see them making progress in their lives,” said their mother Gohar Maranjyan.
Samvel has a dream to continue his education through college or university after he graduates. He is not sure whether he can afford it, though. “Football is my hobby. I can play football with my friends all day long but school my first priority. I know I must study well to be able to take care of my mother,” Samvel told us.
CASP is a program of the Women’s Guild Central Council of the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern). For years, CASP has also focused its attention on the poorest Armenian families of Javaghk. More than 100 children from families deprived of a sole bread winner (father) receive CASP’s monthly stipend.