In observance of International Volunteer Day, on December 5, 2010, the Armenian Volunteer Corps (AVC) organized, “One More Day for Yerevan,” a partial Yerevan city clean to help keep the city clean and enhance a community of engaged citizens.
Joining AVC volunteers in observing International Volunteer Day were volunteers from a wide range of organizations including the Armenian Red Cross Society, Eurasia International University, Professionals for Civil Society, and the Manana Youth Center—where AVC volunteer Sima Cunningham (USA) was serving.
Sima spent three months utilizing her musical talents to creatively teach English at the Manana Youth Center and she encouraged her students to spend the day volunteering with AVC.
Forty three volunteers, from 21-55 years of age, came to Armenia this summer from Canada, Argentina, Brazil, Greece, United Kingdom, France, Jordan, and the United States.
They served in the governmental, private and non-profit sectors at organizations including, but not limited to, Gyumri IT Center, Historic Armenian Houses, Foundation for the Preservation of Wildlife and Cultural Assets, Gyumri Healthy Center, Caritas Armenia, Civilitas Foundation, Manana Youth Center, TUMO Center for Creative Technologies, Erebuni Hospital, ReAnimania Yerevan International Animation Film Festival, National Competitiveness Foundation, Journalists Club Asparez, Shirak Regional Museum of Archeology, Center for Health Services Research, American University of Armenia, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Nagorno-Karabagh Republic, and the list goes on.
Spring really is a busy time of year here in Armenia!
AVC volunteers have been volunteering—but not only at placement sites.
During the month of April AVC volunteers dug holes, planted trees, swabbed mouths, and de-petaled flowers.
On Saturday, April 17, AVC volunteers and Birthright Armenia participants and staff traveled to Yeghegnadzor in the Vayots Dzor region where they joined the Foundation for the Preservation of Wildlife and Cultural Assets in Republic of Armenia (FPWC) in planting trees at School Number 1 for Earth Day.
One of the first questions any newcomer to Armenia has to answer is ‘why are you here?’ This question is not asked to make small talk, as it might be in any well-traveled tourist destination of the world; on the part of the asker, an Armenian from Armenia, the question comes with sincere curiosity.
Of course, many people come to Armenia to see the church at Etchmiadzin, to visit ancient sites and to bring their school books to life before returning home, happy to know that Armenia is real and independent and available for future visitation. Others come to stay a little longer and involve themselves in the life of the country.
Let’s take a look at some of the current AVC volunteers to construct one possible answer.