Society 11:10 26/03/2022 Armenia

A home built from scratch in 5 months – Viva-MTS

After long years of life in rented houses, the Stepanyans try to forget the hardships of the past. The family has moved from one house to another one almost every two years. Finally, the family has its home.

Owing to the support of Viva-MTS and the Fuller Center for Housing Armenia, the family from Artashat, Ararat region, has finally built a place it can call home, from scratch. The construction works, which took only five months, were completed this winter, and the Stepanyans have already celebrated housewarming. The heads of the partner organizations recently visited the family that has already started a new life, Viva-MTS said in a press release on Friday.

“When overcoming problems we have to put aside despair; it is no friend to anyone and is able to ruin everything. Hardships will be gone sooner than later, yet success grounded on will power and faith will stay. We have been implementing this program for more than ten years and believe in its positive impact. With every house that is built we strengthen faith in the hearts of people. The most accurate measure of a program’s success is the optimism in the eyes of people, not just the walls that we build,” Viva-MTS General Manager Ralph Yirikian said.

Karine, the mother of the family, lived a busy life. Almost alone, she raised two sons. The eldest of her sons has been in a wheelchair since childhood. Life circumstances have forced the younger one, the thirteen-year-old Sargis, to take up the role of the man in the family quite early; he helps his mother to take care of his brother and in other difficult matters. It does not prevent him from seriously doing what he prefers. Sargis is a big fan of Armenian musical instrument called dhol. He enjoys practicing it in the newly built home.

“It took 18 years to have a home of our own. We used to rent houses so many times. I have lost count of the houses we have moved to; around 8 houses in 18 years. I have raised my children almost alone. My husband, who has left abroad to work, hardly ever assisted us. It seemed to be a never achievable dream to have a home, not to speak about a three-room one with all the facilities. And it is so important for my eldest son who has special needs,” said Karine.

“This family deserves special attention. The house was built from scratch in just five months. Karine's will power, resilience, and desire to have her own home are so valuable that the least we could do for this family was to be next to them and provide them with decent housing conditions,” said Ashot Yeghiazaryan, the Fuller Center for Housing Armenia President.

During the entire course of the construction, Karine and her children have been on the construction site and have tried to do their most to finish the construction of the house.

The program is aimed at supporting families like this one.  The aim is to build decent and affordable homes for families who are in need of it.

With the support of Viva-MTS and the Fuller Center for Housing Armenia, in 2021 alone, the housing problem of 87 families has been solved. The results of ten years of cooperation are encouraging. The number of families who have started a new life is close to 400.

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