GYUMRI, Armenia—The volunteer groups from VivaCell-MTS and the Fuller Center for Housing Armenia visited Gyumri, again, with the same purpose: to change people’s lives and mindsets through house building. The partners are convinced that any support can contribute to the development of Gyumri, with hopes that the town will no longer be described as a “disaster zone.”
Like many other families, the Soghoyan-Tadevosyans lost their home during the 1988 earthquake. This was followed by long years of living in a metal container. In 2012, the family managed to purchase a semi-constructed building, but was unable to complete the construction work. Since getting married, Christina, who lives in the metal container to this day, has experienced various hardships. Due to her husband’s serious health problems, the dream of having a home remained just that — a dream. The responsibility of saving her family from their current circumstances fell on Christina, whose husband was being treated for his illness abroad. Christina’s initiative has been supported by VivaCell-MTS and the Fuller Center for Housing Armenia.
“It is cold in [the] winter in the metal container. Mornings are the worst… We try to make [it] warmer in the container, but it is useless. And in [the] summer [it] is unbearably hot. Our dream is to get rid of the metal container as soon as possible. We are grateful to the volunteers for giving a helping hand and bringing the completion of the construction works one step closer,” said Christina.
“We are back in Gyumri to support this family striving for the ‘independence’ of its own. It is a symbolic event, for in only 10 days we will be celebrating our country’s Independence Day. These two things may seem unrelated at first sight. That may be true, but this is a good occasion to celebrate while working on the construction of this house. This is particularly so, as the construction is taking place in Gyumri, where every family still deprived of a home bears the memories of the earthquake and the consequences of the devastations it caused. It is the high time to leave all the memories of the past hardships, face the problems, and try to solve them to grow stronger with every memorable day to move forward and to grow. The big success starts with small victories. We are here to share all these with you,” stated VivaCell-MTS General Manager, Ralph Yirikia.
“To lose a home is really sad. Despite the health and financial problems the family has faced, they have not lost their hope and continue to believe that their children will grow up in a house with decent conditions. Volunteers’ participation in the construction works was a great help to the family. This year in Gyumri the housing problem of five families will be solved with the house building program,” said Fuller Center for Housing Armenia President, Ashot Yeghiazaryan.
The construction of the long-awaited house will be finished by the end of the year. With the help of the volunteers, concreting works of the floors have been completed.
VivaCell-MTS is Armenia’s leading telecommunications operator, having the widest network reach and spreading a wide range of Voice and Data services all across Armenia. Having the best of the Armenian people interest at heart since its launch on 1st July 2005 and in a short period of time VivaCell-MTS has managed to build a nationwide network and a considerable customer base. VivaCell-MTS drives innovation and aims at always being at the forefront of any development serving the Armenian mobile communications market. The company follows the guidance provided by ISO 26000 (International Standard of Social Responsibility) and ISO/IEC 27001:2013 (Information Security Management System). For more information visit the website.
Mobile TeleSystems PJSC is the leading telecommunications group in Russia and the CIS, offering mobile and fixed voice, broadband, pay TV as well as content and entertainment services in one of the world’s fastest-growing regions. Including its subsidiaries, the Group services over 100 million mobile subscribers in Russia, Ukraine, Armenia and Belarus. Since July 2000, MTS Level 3 ADRs have been listed on the New York Stock Exchange (ticker symbol MBT). Additional information about the MTS Group can be found online.
Fuller Center for Housing Armenia is a non-governmental, charitable organization that supports community development in the Republics of Armenia and Artsakh by assisting in building and renovating simple, decent and affordable homes, as well as advocating the right to a decent shelter as a matter of conscience and action. FCHA provides long-term, interest-free loans to low-income families. The monthly repayments flow into a Revolving Fund, which is used to help more families, thereby providing a financial foundation for sustainable development. Since 2008 the Fuller Center for Housing Armenia has assisted about 800 families. For more information, please visit the website or email us.