On October 3, 2018, Aleppo Compatriotic Charitable Organization (Aleppo-NGO) met with Ms. Anna-Carin Öst, the newly appointed United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) representative in Armenia, and Anahit Hayrapetyan, UNHCR Armenia’s external relations coordinator.
Aleppo-NGO’s board members presented the organization’s humanitarian programs and initiatives, specifically related to housing and employment, and the ongoing challenges and issues facing Syrian refugees in Armenia.
During the meeting, Ms. Hayrapetyan of UNHCR and Ms. Ani Balkhian, Aleppo-NGO’s Founding President, highlighted the strategic partnership between the two organizations which helped overcome many challenges faced by Syrian refugees in Armenia over the past several years.
Ms. Balkhian underscored the invaluable contributions of UNHCR Armenia’s former representative, Mr. Christoph Bierwirth, to the implementation of Aleppo-NGO’s “Save a Life” project, which helped resettle more than 460 individuals from Syria to Armenia between April 2015 and December 2017.
Moreover, Ms. Balkhian highlighted the paramount importance of the ongoing cooperation between Aleppo-NGO and UNHCR Armenia in the implementation of the “Host a Family” housing program, which secures durable rent-free housing to the most vulnerable Syrian refugee families. Within the framework of the program, Aleppo-NGO finds benefactors to purchase apartments to allocated to Syrian refugee families while UNHCR provides the necessary equipment and furniture for those apartments.
At the conclusion of the meeting, Ms. Balkhian and Ms. Öst reaffirmed their commitment to continue supporting Syrian and other displaced persons in Armenia and their willingness to continue the fruitful and strategic cooperation between Aleppo-NGO and UNHCR Armenia.