ARS to Present Workshop at 56th Annual UN Conference

WATERTOWN–The 56th Annual Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO’s)–Human Security And Dignity: Fulfilling The Promise of The United Nations will take place at United Nations Headquarters in New York September 8 to 10. The Event is organized by the United Nations Department of Public Information (DPI)–in partnership with the NGO/DPI Executive Committee and its Conference Planning Committee.

Currently–the Armenian Relief Society–Inc. (ARS) holds consultative status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and has been a member of the DPI for more than a decade. ARS maintains a team of eight permanent UN representatives including chairperson Maro Minassian. ARS UN representatives Stephanie Mesrobian and Harriet Kazarian regularly attend meetings in New York and have taken on leadership roles in the Conference Planning Committee. Mesrobian chairs the Interactive Media Committee which has developed a website to complement and support the conference and to disseminate information about the conference to the public. Kazarian co-chairs the series of some 30 Mid-Day Workshops that will be held throughout the three-day period.

On September 9–ARS will present a Mid-Day Workshop entitled "Micro-finance: Empowering Women and Persons with Disabilities toward Economic Security" in the Church Center 11th Floor Hardin Conference Room (47th Street and First Avenue). The workshop is open and accessible to the public.

"The ARS recognizes the significance of micro-finance to bring jobs and prosperity in developing countries–namely Armenia. We saw the opportunity to bridge the UN’s Millennium Development Goals with our own mission to empower marginalized persons toward a better life," said Kazarian. "Our participation in this year’s Conference reminds us of our beginnings as a humanitarian organization forged to protect those struggling for human’security."

This year’s conference presents a forum for civil society and the United Nations to jointly reassert their determination to assure that living in security remains an achievable goal and that living in dignity is not a fleeting illusion–but a reality achieved through commitment and international solidarity among all people. The conference will feature keynote speeches by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan–the former president of Brazil Fernando Henrique Cardoso–and other dignitaries. More than 1,700 NGO representatives from some 90 countries around the world are expected to attend.

For further information–call the ARS Central Executive Office at 617-926-5892.

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