WATERTOWN – The Tekeyan Cultural Association of the USA and Canada (TCA) supported the development of the strategic Kashatagh (Lachin) corridor and made significant investments in the region. The TCA supported the Berdzor Tekeyan school in the principal town of the corridor and during the past six years undertook the responsibility of considerable renovations, while the TCA Sponsor a Teacher program supported its teachers and staff financially.
Classroom after classroom, the school’s dilapidated facilities were renovated and the school of 20 students grew to became the attraction of the region. Around it assembled an active community of new settlers. The renovations included 17 classrooms, the reception hall, the roof, drinking water connection, and, most recently, new bathrooms on each of the four floors. The Tekeyan school became the talk of the town and its enrollment grew to be over 220 students.
The 44-day Artsakh war arrived at the end of last year. The unforeseen scenario of vacating the school became a reality. The town of Berdzor and its neighboring regions (Kashatagh) fell into enemy hands. All of a sudden, its residents, students and teachers were forced to become refugees scattered all around Artsakh and Armenia. They lost everything and their living conditions became less than desirable.
The Tekeyan Berdzor school itself was turned into barracks for Armenian soldiers during the war, and afterwards it had to be evacuated. Not only have its alumni and staff been turned forcibly into refugees, but of those alumni who served as soldiers, five were killed and five became disabled, three of whom are seriously handicapped.
A Way to Help
The good news is that once more Tekeyan is engaged in making their lives better, so that the Berdzor refugees remain in Armenia and become part of the nation-building process. This time, help will be provided through investments and not through donations. The creation of a sustainable economy is the aim of this TCA undertaking.