ANCA’s Artsakh campaign leverages community social media reach for Artsakh demining, rehabilitation and security
WASHINGTON—There is less than 48 hours for community members and supporters to lend their social media reach to expand Artsakh safety, security and rehabilitation efforts as part of the Armenian National Committee of America’s innovative ‘Thunderclap’ campaign.
“We are so happy that hundreds of advocates have already signed on to better Artsakh’s future through this Thunderclap. With over 70% percent of our initial goal reached, we look forward to meeting and exceeding our initial target of a 500,000 social media reach by August 2nd,” said Marie Papazian, Taleen Simonian and Mari Tikoyan, members of the ANCA Leo Sarkisian Internship and Hovig Apo Saghdejian Capital Gateway Program summer team, which developed the effort.
Through the ANCA Thunderclap page – anca.org/Artsakh – users allow a one-time pro-Artsakh message on their Facebook, Twitter, and/or Tumblr accounts, scheduled to be posted on August 2nd at 12:00 noon EST. By sharing the pre-written post, each participant spreads the message to their unique group of friends and followers, with the aim of making the pro-Artsakh message go viral.
Then, on the day the campaign launches, Artsakh supporters will be guided to the ANCA’s “Quick Connect” page, directly connecting participants to their U.S. Senators, so that they can speak to a staff member or leave a message. All Quick Connect participants will have a one-time email sent on their behalf to their Senators and Representatives as well.
The three pillars of the campaign reflect the ANCA’s pro-Artsakh advocacy priorities:
1. Safety: Demining Artsakh allows its residents – especially kids – to live free from dangerous explosions. The HALO Trust has already de-mined over 97% of Artsakh with U.S. assistance and private support. The ANCA continues to press Senate and House leaders to help finish the project by including funding in the Fiscal Year 2018 foreign aid bill.
2. Security: Securing Artsakh’s borders is crucial in protecting its citizens and promoting a peaceful resolution that will help keep the region safe and free. House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) and Ranking Democrat Eliot Engel (D-NY) have been joined by over 100 of their House colleagues in calling for the removal of snipers, expansion of monitors and the deployment of gun-locator systems. Armenia and the Republic of Nagorno Karabakh (Artsakh) have agreed to the provisions; Azerbaijan has not.
3. Rehabilitation: Providing desperately needed rehabilitation services, through U.S. funding for the Lady Cox Rehabilitation Center, will restore health and hope for those suffering with disabilities. The ANCA has called for a specific allocation of U.S. assistance to the center as part of the Fiscal Year 2018 foreign aid bill.
The Thunderclap has been used by government agencies, including the White House, and a broad range of policy and rights organizations to bring awareness to a variety of social issues.