Have you ever thought about what the school of your dreams would be like? What would be the tasks, if any? What would you prefer to be taught?
Twenty-two years ago, Vanyans left Yerevan for Tsaghkaberd village of the Kashatagh region in Artsakh, without anything, empty-handed. All these years, they settled and created their own farm, but due to the recent war, they now go back to square one.
Many might relate that having an Armenian first name and introducing yourself when abroad can be challenging, of course, if your name isn’t Ann, Mary, or David.
Meet Artak Mnatsakanyan or, as many know him, Rayter Art, a COAF SMART Center student from Odzun, a mountainous village with extraterrestrial beauty. The fresh air that fills you with inspiration and nature that encourages you to dream big…
Learning to play musical instruments by herself, betting on stretching on a pole, working with a weaving hook, doing splits on a homemade rope, playing in the theater. This list goes on and on.
Once famous for its vineyards, the grape fields of Vazashen were left across the border after the 1990s war. Nowadays, the people of Vazashen have to be satisfied by their home yards.
Nairi comes from the country of colorful and hottest carnivals. “In Brazil, people say that the year starts with carnivals,” explains the young architect with pure Armenian. Carnivals take place in February, which is almost over.
Once you overcome the winding trails taking to Odzun village of the Lori region, it seems like you are about to touch the clouds. Just gaze at the tile roof houses lying somewhere high and the endless fields of wheat, corn, and sunflowers stretching till the rim of the gorge.
The straight road from Yerevan takes you to a small village, living where means waking up every day, walking through pink tuff houses, greeting men playing backgammon (nard) outdoors, and seeing children dashing through the streets, though now less often than they used to – cell phones did it all!
They have the most delicious barbecue, but pig breeding has slumped after the last cholera pandemic. They are known as Russian-speakers, but few speak the language nowadays. They count the inhabited houses not by the smoke coming out from the chimney but with laundry spreads.
As soon as you step through the gate of one’s house in Yeghegnut village of the Lori region, the landlord rushes to invite you for a bite or a drink. Want it or not, here people won’t let you leave without a good treat.
They say the future belongs to those who prepare for it today. We prepare the youth of the COAF SMART Center for a better tomorrow by making a wide range of modern professions accessible to them.