NEW YORK — The Children of Armenia Fund (COAF), a nonprofit organization committed to improving the lives of children in rural Armenia, held its Fifth Annual Summer Soiree on June 16 at the PH-D Rooftop Lounge of the Dream Hotel Downtown. Close to 300 COAF friends and supporters gathered to celebrate the organization’s recent accomplishments and raise funds for entrepreneurship programs to be offered to rural youth and women at the first state-of-the-art COAF Smart Center currently being built in the Lori region of Armenia.
Empowering Armenia’s future entrepreneurs has been at the heart of COAF’s initiatives over the past decade. Providing youth, women and rural businesses with essential skills, knowledge and resources has significantly stimulated local economic development in the regions where COAF has launched its crucial interventions.
COAF’s commitment to expanding to 100 new village communities in Armenia is being realized with the establishment of the first COAF Smart Center in Lori. This strategically located regional epicenter will serve as a bridge for transferring knowledge from professionals to rural communities in an effort to develop functional skills and expertise. The COAF Smart Center will be scalable and self-sustaining, creating a network of empowered Armenian citizens that can work together to improve their own communities from an economic and social standpoint.
The evening was hosted by COAF Board member Diron Jebejian and Andrea Montalbano. Host Committee members included Zarig Baghdadlian, Loris Diran, Alecko Eskandarian, Lara Eurdolian, Monica Ghailian, Sebouh and Michelle Nahabedian, Alex Sarkesian and Chris Sarkesian. Guests included Tony Shafrazi, Patricia Field, Nancy Kricorian, Scout Tufankjian, Loris Diran, Dorinda Medley and John Mahdessian. Event sponsors were Baked by Melissa, Couturier De Cardboard Inc., and Shake + Share Media NYC.
Last year’s COAF Summer Soiree raised more than $50,000 which renovated a dilapidated school auditorium in the village of Aragatsavan. More than 350 students returned to school in the fall of 2014 and were excited to see a whole new auditorium hold assemblies and stage performances.