The Argentinean-Armenian entrepreneur and philanthropist Eduardo Eurnekian has officially launched the New Educational Strategy (NUR) in Nagorno-Karabakh, joining an international movement to bring cutting-edge technologies to disadvantaged students. With AGBU’s support on the ground, Eurnekian, through the Fruitful Armenia Fund, his non-profit organization in Armenia, has begun to distribute over 3,500 brand-new laptops in elementary schools across the region.
As they do every year in April, the Knights and Daughters of Vartan organized their annual Armenian Genocide Commemoration event in New York City, and AGBU is always proud to be a co-sponsor. On April 22, 2012, hundreds gathered in the Kavookjian Hall of St. Vartan Cathedral on 34th Street to remember and pay homage to the 1.5 million martyrs murdered by the Ottoman Turks. AGBU’s official liaison to the event, Natalie Gabrelian, made the below remarks:
NOTE: Though the event is normally held in Times Square to spread awareness of the Genocide to the general public, the inclement weather caused the event to be moved indoors.
AGBU Message Delivered by Natalie Gabrelian
97th Anniversary Commemoration of the Armenian Genocide
Kavookjian Hall, St. Vartan Cathedral, NYC
April 22, 2012
The year 1915 tested the strength and endurance of the Armenian people. In an attempt to silence our minds, Armenian political leaders and intellectuals were placed under arrest and brutally murdered by Turkish authorities in Constantinople. Banished from their homes, convoys of tens of thousands of Armenian men, women, and children were deported into the Syrian Desert, and forced to march hundreds of miles without food or water, ultimately leading to death through starvation, exhaustion, bloodshed, and even suicide. Over 1.5 innocent lives were lost at the hands of the savage Ottomans.
Ground has officially been broken for AGBU’s new Yerevan headquarters, which will no doubt be the city’s central hub for many exciting cultural and youth programs.
On Friday, April 13, 2012, on the main floor of what will soon be a 6-story building, a distinguished crowd gathered for a special blessing ceremony to celebrate the milestone. The service, led by His Grace Bishop Hovnan Hakobyan, Grand Sacristan of the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, was attended by Vasken Yacoubian, AGBU Central Board member; Hovig Eordekian, AGBU Armenian Representation Interim Director; Simon Ter-Simonyan, Head of the Armenian government’s Committee for Coordinating Humanitarian Projects, as well as AGBU Armenia staff, AGBU Yerevan Scouts, and several local members. They all listened eagerly while Yacoubian described the environmentally–friendly facilities that they will be able to enjoy once construction is complete next year, including fully equipped offices, conference rooms, exhibition halls and an underground parking garage. As he detailed, while the expansive space of over 6,000 square meters will be completely modern, the building will have a historical façade and many architectural details that will give it that distinct, “Old Yerevan” feel.
An exciting triple-header took place at the AGBU Toronto Center on March 30, 2012, exhibiting the organization’s many wonderful programs geared toward youth.
AGBU University Outreach Coordinator and Camp Nubar assistant director Dan Antreasyan traveled from New York to give two informative presentations. The first helped future campers and parents alike learn about the incredible opportunities offered at Camp Nubar, which is quickly approaching its 50th anniversary. Throughout the evening, past campers, counselors and parents were also given the opportunity to get together and reminisce over some of their most cherished memories and enlighten potential campers about the richness of the program and the variety of activities the camp has to offer. During his second presentation, Dan spoke to a sizeable number of local university students who had gathered to hear about what exciting summer plans they could make through AGBU – via an internship, camp counselor or other programs.
The Sports & Youth Committee also came out to play an exciting basketball game between the Junior Boys and Girls teams. Although the girls led throughout most of the game, the boys managed to pull off the victory by a mere five points. The audience witnessed a fun game and both teams were happy to participate in a fundraiser that will help them represent Toronto at the AGBU World Games in Los Angeles coming up this summer.