Telethon Raises Over Six Million for Major Karabagh Road

LOS ANGELES (Combined Sources)–The 2003 Hayastan All-Armenian Fund Telethon–which took place in Los Angeles on November 27–ended with donations worth a total of $6,072,557 US dollars–according to preliminary calculations.

The bulk of the money raised came from the United States–where Armenian-American donation pledges totaled some $4 million this year.

The countries of Canada–Sweden–Spain–France–Kuwait–Lebanon–Russia–and Britain each made online donations at the Fund’s web site. The total amount collected was $12,055 US dollars.

The overall figure–which is 20 percent higher than the sum raised last year–includes $900,000 collected by the Armenian community of France in a separate phone campaign earlier this month.

The latest telethon saw a further surge in donations from Armenia and Karabagh which contributed $720,000–almost three times more than in November 2002. Most of the contributions came from local companies and wealthy individuals.

Large-scale donations dominated the Diaspora fund-raising. Louise Manoogian Simone–whose Detroit-based Armenian General Benevolent Union has long engaged in charitable work in Armenia–gave $1 million for the second consecutive year.

A $1 million payment to Hayastan was also made by Los Angeles businessman Albert Boyajian. Speaking at the telethon–Boyajian complained that fellow Armenian-Americans are too tight-fisted with regard to their historical homeland. They should have raised much larger sums–he said.

Philanthropist Gerard Cafesjian made a generous contribution of $500,000 US dollars–and Ara Abrahamian from Russia donated $200,000 US dollars.

The $25 million project–launched in 2000–aims to link northern and southern parts of Karabagh with a modern highway which officials say will boost the Armenian-populated region’s security and economy. Direct transport communication between those mountainous areas has for decades been carried out via nearby lowlands in Azerbaijan proper.

A 44-kilometer stretch of the road has already been build–and work is currently underway on its separate 26-kilometer section. Hayastan officials said before the telethon that $15 million is necessary for its completion.

The Fund implemen’s projects of reconstruction–renovation–and construction of substructures in Armenia and Karabagh. It has scientific-cultural and social assistance projects as well. Beginning this month–the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund’s local committee of the West Coast US will work towards accumulating all the pledged donations.


Discussion Policy

Comments are welcomed and encouraged. Though you are fully responsible for the content you post, comments that include profanity, personal attacks or other inappropriate material will not be permitted. Asbarez reserves the right to block users who violate any of our posting standards and policies.