HELP FOR CHANGE
- Diaconia Charitable Foundation
- The main activities are: in the morning volunteers will be involved in the cleaning works, in the afternoon they will organize cultural development programs for children from socially vulnerable families in "Huysi Avan" district, such as singing, dancing, painting, they will organize various volunteer competitions. Volunteers will teach their national songs, dances, which will include the final event display. Volunteers will also be involved in the Foundation’s activities: distribution of food, school supplies, provision of clothing, visiting families in different regions of Armenia to assess the needs of families, organizing free recreational activities for children with disabilities, home visits.
- The participants will stay in the two-story building of the foundation. The rooms are designed separately for boys and girls. All conditions are suitable for living in the building. Do not worry about sleeping bags, as you will stay in buildings/cottages of the hosting organizations where you will be provided with beds/mattresses and bedding packs. In Armenian camps you should be disciplined and organized. Making beds and keeping the rooms neat and clean every day is obligatory. Volunteers will prepare the food by themselves. You will taste all kinds of Armenian traditional food, such as dolma, khorovats (barbecue), kiabab, khashlama, incomparable fruits of Ararat Valley - apricots, grapes, peaches, apples, berries etc. and vegetables.
- «Huysi Avan» district Armenia is called an open-air museum. You will have lots of interesting excursions and visits to historical monuments and museums, which will be organized during the workcamp.
- It is very important to bring with you different table games, songbooks, children’s song CDs to work with children and for using in the performances/concerts which will be organized on the last day of the workcamp. During the workcamp volunteers will organize the Intercultural day when each volunteer will present his/her country, so please bring photos and booklets describing your country, recipes of national dishes, products and spices to prepare it and national songs
Voluntary Service of Armenia - Republican Headquarters of Student Brigades (HUJ) The Republican Headquarters of Student Brigades (HUJ) was founded in 1965. HUJ is registered as a non-governmental organization. It is a member of the Coordinating Committee of International Voluntary Service (CCIVS) at UNESCO and the Allianceof European Voluntary Service organizations. Historical overview During Soviet times every year Armenian student brigades, each having about 10 thousand students, worked in big construction areas and enterprises of the former Soviet Union and Armenia. Right after the disastrous earthquake that shattered Armenia in 1988, HUJ formed rescue teams which spared no effort to save more than thousand alive people from the ruins. Every year from 1989 to1993 HUJ organized brigades, consisting of 14-15 thousand people, to work in the earthquake zone doing rehabilitation and construction work. They actively participated in the reconstruction of 7 towns and 149 villages, which had appeared on the verge of destruction. From 1993 till 1999 HUJ organized the care for lonely old people at home by 600-700 students of Medical Universities and colleges of Armenia. Since 1992 HUJ has been implementing international volunteer exchanges. Activities of HUJ Every year 250 Armenian volunteers participate in ecological, construction, rehabilitation, cultural, aesthetic, social projects, seminars and educational programs of international workcamps abroad. They also participate in long-term (8-12 months) and medium-term programs, European Voluntary Service (EVS) programs. For more than 5 years HUJ has been EVS (European Commission- DG Education and Culture “Youth in Action program”) hosting and sending organization- sending volunteers to European countries (Italy, Spain, France, Germany, Estonia, Lithuania, Czech Republic) to participate in various voluntary activities such as social care, cultural, civil protection, environment etc. EVS volunteers arriving to Armenia participate in projects in Zatik orphanage, Rehabilitation Center for Children, National Botanical Gardens, Armenia Tree Project, SOS Kinderdorf and etc. Every summer HUJ organizes 6-7 international workcamps in Armenia, where Armenian volunteers hand in hand with 150 foreign volunteers do ecological and renovation work, take care of sick and disabled children, contribute to the aesthetic education of orphan and lonely children. HUJ organizes joint projects with UN Development Program, UN World Food Program, UN High Commissioner for Refugees, UNICEF, OSCE- Yerevan office, and foreign embassies in Armenia. HUJ implements its activities with the RA Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Health, Labor and Social Care and Ecology with the support of HUJ cooperates also with other governmental bodies, funds and NGOs. At present HUJ organizes volunteer exchanges with 120 partner organizations abroad. There are 3000 volunteers registered in HUJ as of today. Aims and Objectives The essential aims and objectives of HUJ are as follows: • Organize the activities of Armenian and foreign volunteers in international workcamps in Armenia. • Send Armenian volunteers to international workcamps, seminars, symposiums, workshops, educational and other programs abroad. Organize seminars and conferences in Armenia. Organize the participation of foreign volunteers in long/ medium term and EVS projects in Armenia, as well as Armenian volunteers in countries of Europe. • Take care of orphans, children with special needs and socially indigent people. Different seminars and programs organized by HUJ: • Seminar for “Medium and Small Enterprises” organized in cooperation with OSCE- Office in Yerevan. • Anti-Corruption “Building Capacity of the Civil Society to Participate in Anti-corruption initiatives in Armenia” joint project of the Government of Armenia, the Unites Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) “Corruption Perception and Risks in Higher Education” implemented by HUJ-Voluntary Service of Armenia • General Assembly and Conference of Alliance of European Voluntary Service organizations in Armenia, Yerevan “International Voluntary Service as means of effective cooperation of youth of the post Soviet countries and the countries of the European Union” • Post Camp Event Seminar of the Alliance of European Voluntary Service Organizations “When the East meets the West” in Yerevan, Armenia • “Human Rights-Learning and Training” seminar organized by HUJ-Voluntary Service of Armenia supported and organized together with the Italian Government and OSCE office in Yerevan • International seminar of CCIVS (Coordinating Committee for International Voluntary Service) “Volunteering for a vision” • Monitoring on “Qualification examination for candidates to receive licenses for advocate’s activities” administered by the RA Chamber of Advocates, American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative (ABA/ROLI) and USAID • Study visits of the volunteers from European Countries in Armenia. • Long term program in taking care of disabled people in their homes etc.
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