yp-sofia-retreat-_2-2.jpgWe received this note from our YPs in Sofia about their first-ever Weekend Retreat in a Bulgarian hamlet noted for its cultural heritage and traditional regional architecture. The event attracted 20 area YPs for an event that is sure to be repeated:

On November 24, 20 YPs and friends convened at the “Despot Slav” hotel, in the picturesque town of Melnik, Bulgaria for YP Sofia’s first Fall Weekend Retreat.

Melnik is one of the smallest towns in Bulgaria but also one of the richest in architectural history. Cuddled in the midst of the sun-bathed sandstone hills in the South West of Bulgaria, it is famous for its red wine and preserved architectural landmarks dating back to the 1800′s. Twenty members of YP Sofia and their friends chose this ideal location to conduct their first YP Weekend Retreat.

The purpose of the event, apart from getting away from the fuss of the city, was to discuss the strategic framework and events program drafted by the group’s new steering committee. The discussions were lively and produced a common understanding of the purpose of YP, its mission and strategy, and program priorities. Furthermore, the attendants agreed on a tentative schedule of YP activities for 2008.

The YPs then “rewarded” themselves with a joyful dinner at the hotel’s tavern which features a huge fireplace and an impressive red wine collection from a local wine cellar. On Sunday morning everyone headed back to the Bulgarian capital after a brief recap of evening’s events.

For more information on YP Sofia, please email ypsofia@agbubg.org.

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The Young Professionals of Orange County (YPOC) reemerged on the YP scene with their November 16 welcome back mixer which was attended by a few dozen supporters at Zmario in Irvine, CA. The event raised funds for AGBU’s Children’s Centers in Armenia and kick started a new season of activity for AGBU’s second YP group in Southern California.

For those interested in staying abreast of upcoming YPOC events and news, please join their Facebook group by clicking here. Below are some photos (via Facebook) from the event.

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The FOCUS 2007 video is now online on AGBU’s YouTube channel.

Toasting the 20th Anniversary of the New York Summer Intern Program, the Saturday gala night video features interviews with program alumni and offers some insight into why the program continues to inspire a generation of college-aged students of Armenian descent.

For more information on NYSIP, visit the website by clicking here.

To apply, click here for an application…and please note December 7, 2007 is the deadline for applications.

PART I

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2N0xndBM-4o]

PART II

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yiRq4w_GeJk]

sosvillagesnowblower.jpgExperiences in Summer Make Hearts Warm in Winter

After spending last summer at the SOS Children’s Village in Armenia, a group of young Canadian Armenians, the AGBU Montreal Venturers, has continued to give back to that small community. The scouting group recently raised over $1,200 to purchase a new snowblower for the village, to make harsh winter months more bearable for its residents.

The initial visit of the Montreal Venturers, the oldest section of the AGBU scouts, to Armenia in 2006 was jointly organized by AGBU and the Armenian Student Detachment, also known as HUJ. During this trip, the Canadian-Armenian scouts painted benches, cleaned playground areas, and installed a basketball hoop for their peers in the SOS Children’s village. The recent donation of the snowblower was an important step in a series of continuous follow-up projects for the scouts to this village.

Founded in 1949, the SOS Children’s Village is an independent social development organization, which is active in the field of children’s needs, concerns and rights in over 132 countries, including Armenia.

“What makes this project unique and exceptional is that it was conceived, organized, planned and fundraised in its entirety by 15- to 18-year-olds with minimal assistance,” said Viken Attarian, former chairman of the AGBU Montreal chapter, a current member of the Scouts’ Council.

The AGBU Montreal Venturers is continuously helping their community. The group has been twice honored with the Inukshuk Award by the Canadian Scouting Federation, for their work in inspiring other Canadian scouts to push the limits of community service.

The memories and impressions made in the SOS Children’s Village have stayed with the Canadian-Armenian youth long after their trip and they hope to continue their humanitarian support in the future.

 

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Armenians in New York City will be celebrating in grand style this Thanksgiving Eve, while also providing some aid and assistance to those that are less fortunate.

AGBU Young Professionals of Greater New York (AGBU YPGNY), Armenian Network-Greater New York region, New York Armenian Students’ Association (NY ASA) and Armenian Youth Federation-Youth Organization of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (AYF-YOARF) New York Hyortik and New Jersey Arsen Chapters will be hosting a Thanksgiving Eve party on Wednesday, November 21st at COLUMBUS 72.

More than just an Armenian holiday gathering, the event highlights the organizers’ sponsorship of four worthy humanitarian projects: AGBU Senior Dining Centers (agbu.org/programs), Armenia Fund-Martakert Hospital Project in Karabagh (www.armeniafund.org), Armenia Tree Project (www.armeniatree.org) and ARS Javakhk Relief Program (www.arseastus.org).

Event Details:
Doors open at 10 pm, 21+ (proper ID required)
Admission: $20 with RSVP, $25 at the door — RSVP deadline is Monday, November 19th
To RSVP, please send an email with YOUR NAME and NAMES OF YOUR GUESTS to RSVP112107@gmail.com.

To get future event notices, join the AGBU YPGNY Facebook group by clicking here. You can also join the AGBU Facebook group by clicking here.