August 2014 marks an important milestone in U.S. development efforts in Armenia, as one of the most successful programs that has provided humanitarian assistance to Armenia since 1992 is reaching its successful conclusion.
For the past 22 years, the U.S. Department of State has provided humanitarian assistance in Armenia and throughout the former Soviet Union. Known collectively as Operation Provide Hope, nearly USD $5 billion in assistance has been provided to needy populations, including the elderly, disabled, orphans, children, and victims of disaster. To date, assistance valued at almost USD $435 million has been directed to Armenia.
The conclusion of Operation Provide Hope reflects Armenia’s transition to a state with a strong, self-sustaining economy. . The United States will continue to help Armenia succeed through supporting the emergence of a diversified private sector, strong financial institutions, and an internationally competitive workforce.
On August 21, Ambassador Heffern hosted a reception to honor those partners that have contributed significantly to the program. Attendees included the guest of honor Jerry Oberndorfer, the director of DOS Humanitarian; H.E. Mr. Armen Yeritsyan, Minister of Emergency Situations and H.E. Mr. Artem Asatryan, Minister of Social Affairs; along with local NGOs and direct beneficiaries of the program.
Among other major successes in Armenia, the program:
- Renovated 51 educational institutions and health facilities through the Small Reconstruction Project component;
- Delivered about $1.2 million worth of Disaster Package containers consisting of sleeping bags, bedding, footwear, medical supplies, equipment, and field supplies;
- Imported and distributed more than $300 million worth of humanitarian assistance to more than 2 million vulnerable people;
- Provided more than 230 health facilities and special educational institutions throughout the country with essential medicines, medical supplies, and non-medical commodities, including clothing, health kits, school kits, layette kits, sewing kits, quilts, bedding packs, and other types of relief items;
- Provided approximately 150,000 people with annual access to free medicine, medical supplies, and non-medical commodities;
- Distributed almost $34 million worth of goods to primary health care facilities as well as to other socially vulnerable groups;
- Distributed more than $6 million worth of pharmaceuticals and supplies;
- Established, equipped, and supported a clinic in Alaverdi in collaboration with private donors, This clinic provided medical services free of charge to the vulnerable people of the community;
- Created a Mobile Medical Team that provides medical services free of charge to the remotest communities in Lori and Tavush marzes;
- Delivered more than 100,000 doses of the vaccine against measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) to Yerevan and rural areas as part of a children’s vaccination program.
The program has been working through five main partners in Armenia:
Counterpart’s Community and Humanitarian Assistance Program (CHAP), United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) -Armenia, Hellenicare, International Relief and Development (IRD) and Vishnevskaya-Rostropovich Foundation (VRF).