Armenia is facing a significant problem with respect to providing housing for orphans who graduate from the orphanage system in Armenia. Currently, the state provides subsidized housing for these people. However, housing in the cities is not only expensive, but also scarce and inadequate. Last year, less than half of the graduating orphans received state-subsidized housing. Of those orphans who are not allocated subsidized apartments, some remain in orphanages, some move to shelters operated by various non-profit organizations, and sadly, many of them sleep wherever they find a place, often on the street.
The Armenian government recognizes this as a serious problem. According to the Chairman of the Control Chamber of the Parliament of Armenia, Ishkhan Zakarian, the Control Chamber wants to propose resettlement of ex-orphans to rural communities, where the government may buy cheaper housing, and find better jobs for former orphans. “For example, if we buy the former orphans apartment on the outskirts of the city, we still do not know where its owner will be able to work. In rural communities, this question is much easier to solve - there, in addition to the house, the State may grant and land.” said I. Zakarian.
At FAR, we are doing our best to improve the situation for older orphans in Armenia. For example, FAR provides dormitory-style housing to orphans that receive a Gulamerian scholarship to further their studies. With continued support from our donors, we hope to expand programs such as this one.