By Adroushan Andy Armenian, Armenia Honorary Consul of Las Vegas
Earlier this year we had written about a small and unknown village in Armenia, nestled in the mountains on the East shore of Lake Sevan, named Kalavan. 30 families, mostly displaced from Sumgait, Azerbaijan call Kalavan home. From the main road, it is 7 kilometers (4.5 miles) drive on poor road conditions full of potholes, and it will take a 4-wheel-drive approximately 45 minutes to reach the village after almost 2 hours of driving from Yerevan.
The Las Vegas Armenian-American Community, in cooperation with Armenian American Cultural Society of Las Vegas, had initiated a project to provide solar water heaters to five elderly and needy families in Kalavan. The village of Kalavan is not connected to the natural gas grid resulting in the use of air-polluting wood-burning furnaces for heating.
Through virtual campaigning we reached several donors; and with their generosity we raised $3,986 to finance and install five solar water heaters. Once again, we would like to thank all donors for their generosity and would like to thank Robert Ghukasyan, the Kalavan village advocate who coordinated the installation process.
There were several notable accomplishments in Kalavan during the past six months and we would like to highlight:
1. Construction of a footbridge across the Kalavan Creek, funded by Armenian Hikers Association – AHA Armenia.
2.Hiking Trail Markings, funded by Armenian Hikers Association – AHA Armenia.
3. Completion of the Time Land Scientific & Ecotourism Center, a $150,000 project funded by USAID and the United Nations to serve visiting scientific excavations, hikers, ecotourism and the local and regional youth.
4. New school desks for students and teachers donated by the Armenia School Foundation (ASF) of Glendale, California
|Our next project is to help replace and install new weatherproof windows at the Kalavan School. Attached are a few photos of the current conditions of the school’s wooden windows that have been rotting for the past few decades.|
We have bid to several suppliers and have received the most competitive bid to replace all 22 windows with weatherproof plastic framed windows for a total of $3,489, material and labor included. With savings from the previous solar water heater project to be applied to the balance for the school window replacement project, we are $1,500 short to be able to fund this initiative.
We would like to reach out to our readers and ask for your support in raising $1,500 to provide 22 weatherproofed windows to the Kalavan School and have them in place prior to the start of the new school year.
You could mail your tax-deductible checks to Armenian American Cultural Society to:
2054 East Desert Inn Road
Las Vegas, NV 89169, USA.
You could also send donations to AACS via PayPal.
|We hope you could visit Kalavan to see the impact your donations have made! You can make a quick 2.5-hour scenic drive from Yerevan or even enjoy one of several Bed & Breakfast places for overnight stays. E-mail Robert Ghukasyan for further information at [email protected] or visit/message Robert Ghukasyan’s Facebook page.|
Below is a recent YouTube link for an excellent 33 minutes documentary about Kalavan in the Armenian language. Even for non-Armenian speakers, please watch and enjoy the breathtaking scenery and the humble village life.