MONTEBELLO, Calif—The Armenian Relief Society (ARS) of Western USA, Nairy Chapter, was the host of the ARS 93rd Annual Regional Convention, and organized a program on the second day of the convention to celebrate its own 45th anniversary. The dinner-dance program was held on July 13, 2013, at the Armenian Center in Montebello, with dozens of delegates and guests participating, along with some local residents. Among the guests was the ARS of Eastern USA Regional Executive representative Taline Mkrtschjan.
Opening remarks were made by the convention organizing committee chairperson Arpik Najarian, who invited the ARS members and guests to renew their oath “to be the true successors of our founders and benefactors.” Following with the national and ARS anthems sung by Nairy Chapter Executive chairperson Heghine Harboyan, Pastor of Holy Cross Cathedral, Rev. Fr. Ashod Kambourian provided blessing for realizing the ARS dreams in service of the Armenian people. The pastor also conveyed Prelate Arch. Moushegh Mardirossian’s blessings and congratulations.
ARS Central Executive Board representative to the 93rd Convention, Annie Kechichian congratulated the ARS Nairy Chapter, noting that when the anniversary of a chapter is celebrated, it is a sign of the chapter’s success and continued existence, and proof of the advancement of the centenarian ARS. Kechichian urged to involve the youth in Armenian community life, and congratulated the ARS Nairy members for their many years of hard work and countless efforts to help families and advance the Armenian language and culture, in addition to congratulating the ARS supporters for their contributions.
ARS of Western USA, Regional Executive chairperson Lena Bozoyan congratulated the ARS Nairy Chapter members for their golden hearts, iron will and unwavering efforts during the past 45 years. She commended the Nairy Chapter’s level of activity, dedication and strong ties of fellowship, and she was confident that the chapter would continue its many accomplishments. Bozoyan promised that together they would continue to meet the ever-changing societal needs of our local communities and serve as symbols of hope to our brethren in the homeland.
On behalf of the ARS Regional Executive, Bozoyan presented a plaque commemorating the Nairy Chapter’s 45th anniversary to the Chapter Executive chairperson Heghine Harboyan.
The chapter had displayed posters of old photographs of ARS history and a video of the early history of the ARS was shown during the program, which was followed by the message of the ARF Tro Committee representative Levon Kirakosian, Esq. He said that he was one of the displaced persons (DPs) shown on the video, but wished that more of his friends were with him. He congratulated the Nairy Chapter and asked the ARS to include the local youth and their needs in their programs. He handed a certificate of recognition by Christina Cortez, the Mayor of the City of Montebello, to Heghine Harboyan.
Harboyan reminded the audience of the accomplishments of the chapter: 45 years ago the chapter was founded; 31 years ago the Saturday School was founded; 15 years ago the day care was founded; and during the past year 5 new members joined the chapter. The Nairy Day Care had been recognized by the City of Montebello Chamber of Commerce as a “Quality of Life” business for 2013. She congratulated the Nairy Chapter members, who believe in the volunteering and value teamwork.
Throughout the convention, the ARS Nairy Chapter volunteers had demonstrated their willingness to do their best in order to provide for the delegates and guests who arrived in Montebello. “Vartskernit gadar” as they say for a job well done.