yic newsletter_ september 2012

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YIC Newsletter_ September 2012


  • September October 2012 #3

    Upcoming Clubs


    14:00 International Club

    (Sona Sahakyan)

    16:00 English for beginners

    (Volodya Khachatryan)

    17:30 Conversational English

    (Kimberly VanKirk)


    15:00 Spanish Club

    (Anna Harutyunyan)

    16:00 English for beginners

    (Volodya Khachatryan)


    15:00 Turkish Club

    (Yeranuhi Hovhannisyan)


    16:30 Farsi Club

    (Galya Hovhannisyan)

    More info on Facebook:




    As part of YICs mission to develop and promote active citizenship and

    participation among youth, the organization offers youth a variety of opportunities to

    become involved in events, activities, and trainings happening in Armenia and across


    One of the latest opportunities was the training course Peace Initiatives - Conflict

    Management Skills - Youth Participation in Conflict Transformation, that took place

    in Tbilisi, Georgia from September 18th 26th. The training brought 28 European

    youth workers- representing over 10 different countries- together in order to foster a

    cross-cultural dialogue and allow the participants to share and exchange approaches

    to youth participation in conflict regions. YIC members Armine Khachatryan and

    Suzan Muradyan attended from Armenia.

    Using a variety of non-formal education methods - including simulation exercises,

    group work, debates, theatre, and evaluation - the training focused on how to

    strengthen the role of young people in peace-building activities in regions of conflict.

    The training also provided participants with the opportunity to visit some local

    historical places and learn about the culture and history of Georgia, as well as to

    introduce their own countries and cultures to each other during an Intercultural


    The training was implemented by the Slovak-Georgian Society in cooperation with

    the Academy for Peace and Development in Georgia.

    Armine Khachatryan and Suzan Muradyan

    Training Course in Georgia

    Conflict Transformation

  • During the month of September, YIC was busy preparing

    for the arrival of the new European Voluntary Service

    volunteers- five of them, all from different countries. This

    time, YIC will be hosting volunteers from Denmark, Poland,

    Austria, Romania, and Portugal.

    The volunteers will work on projects to raise European

    awareness and encourage cultural exchange in Gyumri. The

    project is a response to a strong interest in- and the need to

    facilitate access to- European culture, particularly for young

    people from disadvantaged backgrounds, which will largely be

    done through the framework of European Corner at YIC.

    Additionally, during their service in Gyumri, the volunteers

    will organize language and cultural clubs at YIC to teach

    members about their respective cultures and languages.

    The project also aims to enlarge the scope of knowledge of

    local youth about European citizenship, to inform youth

    about other cultures, and to help others recognize that what is

    different is not necessarily wrong; rather, it is an opportunity

    to acquire new knowledge and understanding. The project will

    actively involve local youth in creating their own future

    through developing their personal lives and contributing to

    the community in which they live.

    Besides the activities and information from European

    Corner, the volunteers will work at local secondary schools

    and universities, where they will interact directly with local

    students. The project will also be part of a wider campaign

    aimed at promoting youth activity and volunteerism in

    Armenia. Nelli Minasyan

    EVS Hosting

    Mixture of Cultures in Gyumri

    Above: YICs five EVS-volunteers (from left to right): Kristoffer

    from Denmark, Lus from Portugal, Aleksandra from Poland,

    Victoria from Austria and Iustina from Romania.

    Left: The EVS-volunteers are hosting European Club every

    Thursday at 15.00, starting from Thursday 1st November. Watch

    the video commercial here:


  • Let the SUN shine brighter for EVERYONE

    Since April 2012, YIC volunteer Syuzanna Galstyan has

    been participating in the Joint Civic Education (JCE) country

    program. Within the framework of this program, which

    included training in project management, Syuzanna and

    Karine Mkhitaryan (another program participant) designed

    and implemented a project at the F. Nansen boarding school

    in Gyumri. The project was called Let the SUN shine

    brighter for EVERONE, with the idea that all children are

    born with equal rights and the sun must shine equally

    bright for everyone.

    There are not many boarding schools in Gyumri, but within

    the few that do exist many of the children do not have the

    opportunity to work or cooperate with people outside of the

    boarding school, which can cause many of them to feel cut

    off from society. The project therefore aimed at providing the

    opportunity for children at the boarding schools to cooperate

    with other children in a way which- to some extent would

    help facilitate and smooth the process of social integration.

    Through encouraging this cooperation, the project also aimed

    at developing the childrens communication and team-work


    The project consisted of the following stages:

    getting to know each other through juggling activities and

    interactive games

    teaching stencil art

    exhibition of the childrens artwork

    presentation of the project at Youth Initiative Centre

    Originally only 15 children were scheduled to take part in

    the project, but due to the childrens strong interest and

    desire to participate, more than 15 children were involved. In

    the weeks since the workshop, some of the participants have

    continued to keep in touch with each other, which

    demonstrates the success of the workshop in achieving its


    The project also sparked the enthusiasm of some youth and

    provided motivation for them to become more active. Several

    local and international YIC volunteers were involved in the

    project, and many of the local volunteers showed great

    interest in taking part in the JCE program. Due to the level of

    interest, Syzanna Galstyan led a follow-up workshop at the

    YIC office to provide information about JCE, the available

    country and cross-border programs, project management

    training, and information about her own project.

    Syuzanna Galstyan

  • Near the end of September, residents of Gyumri had a

    unique opportunity to see the city from a new perspective -

    through art. Flavie Laporte, a French EVS volunteer working

    at YIC, wanted to organize a project during her voluntary

    service that combined artwork and cultural exchange. To do

    that, she arranged an art residency project for three French

    artists from the Pas Vu Pas Pris Association in Allevard,

    France. From September 20th - 29th, these artists stayed in

    Gyumri and worked with three Armenian artists from the 5th

    Floor Cultural Group.

    The project was designed to encourage art awareness and

    understanding, and aimed to increase accessibility to art and

    culture. During the first few days of the project, one of the

    visiting artists- a French sculptor named Sophie Dody -

    invited local youth to learn about visual art through an

    interactive, four-day workshop. Together, participants

    designed an original, life-sized statue of a woman made only

    from wire and coloured paper. For participant and YIC

    member Gagik Grigoryan, the workshop was a new

    experience, unlike anything he had done before. Afterward,

    the youth participants presented their artwork at a local

    exhibition at the Berlin Art Hotel.

    Meanwhile, the French and Armenian artists also created

    their own artistic pieces, each designed to show the

    contrasting landscapes of Gyumri. During this process, the

    artists visited the district of Mush, where they collected

    various discarded objects and materials including pieces of

    cement, metal scraps, and trash to be recycled for use in their

    artwork. The final exhibition of the artists work, entitled

    Building Ruins, included live performance, installation art,

    photography, and video. It was open to the public from

    September 28th through October 4th at the Style Gallery in


    Kim VanKirk

    Art Residency in Gyumri

  • We caught the member of July, Arthur Yessayan, for an interview:

    How did you find YIC?

    My friend Anna told me about it.

    What is the best thing about YIC?

    YIC manages to bring together open-minded young people

    with a new way of thinking, and I really like to communicate

    and cooperate with them. YIC joined together young people

    with a non-standard way of thinking and free mentality, who

    are different from the majority of society and the standard

    way of thinking; and I like to communicate and work with

    these people.

    What is the most important thing you have learnt at


    I think YIC has tau