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  • Tatev

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Volunteers Settled in and Hard at Work

On July 6th, the group headed on a 13-hour scenic bus journey through Armenia stopping off to visit Khor Virap and Noravank monasteries arriving at Yeghvard late into the night. All the volunteers are in high spirits and immediately bonded. They are staying at a home that is currently vacant so there is plenty of room. However, as with most villages, there is a shortage of water and very basic shower and toilet facilities are available.


Local PRESS interviews LCO
The next morning, television and newspaper reporters came from the nearby regional capital of Kapan (25 minutes away) to witness the launching of this summer’s campaign. Our volunteers, board members, and village mayor were interviewed which were published and viewed on local Kapan news.

The Yeghvard renovation project is a continuation of the work that began in 2008 by our French sister organization Organisation Terre et Culture (OTC). This summer, jointly LCO-USA, OTC, and LCO-Armenia will be concentrating on this site.

The volunteers were very excited to begin their work. After the first day, the group began work on the interior of the church and its altar. The group also started clearing around the exterior of the church and digging out khachkars (stone crosses) that were found on the church’s complex. As with all our campaigns, the local children were immediately drawn to our volunteers and our activities. In a couple of hours each female volunteer had a crew of three-four young children assisting in the work.

Local Children Helping Out

On the weekend, the group took a three-hour drive to the village of Tatev. LCO had previously completed the village’s Sourp Minas Church. In honor of LCO’s past campaign and its continuous personal support by Nazareth Kevonian, the village hosted a dinner and delightful school program. The volunteers enjoyed touring Tatev, which is a much larger village than this year’s Yeghvard site. While visiting the Tatev Monastery, they were amazed by the sheer beauty and location of the historic monastery. Following the excursion, the group returned to Yeghvard to rest on Sunday, so they could continue the mission starting on Monday.

To follow their trip, please continue to monitor the news section and visit our gallery where we will post pictures as they become available.
  • "There are experiences you shape and then there are experiences that shape you. The LCO Campaign of 2007 in the village of Azat offered me invaluable perceptions into the realities of my fellow Armenian brothers and sisters in a way only a true immersion program can. I urge everyone and anyone who might feel an inkling of belonging to this fascinating country, people, and history to sign up with the campaign immediately. I smile just thinking about what you have yet to experience."
    Noushig K, Azat 2007, CA, USA

  • "Coming back from a 4-day trip to Kharabagh really felt like coming back home, with our family waiting to greet us outside our house. That's when I realised just how attached we'd grown to the place, to our family, to the other volunteers"
    Anoosh Gasparian, Azat 2009, London UK

  • "I went to this trip with no expectations, and came back with a great appreciation for our country.  Life in the village is surreal, the food is beyond delicious and the people are incredibly nice. It was a once in a lifetime experience I will never forget!"  Sam Tahmasian, 2009, CA, USA
  • "LCO is an amazing concept. It introduced the deprived Diasporan to their land and their people. It is a wonderful introduction to Armenia and something every young man or woman should experience."
    Madlene Minassian Ispirian, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, Yerevan, Armenia

  • "My most memprable experience was being so warmly taken care by an old village couple, receiving gifts from them, giving them gifts and establishing bonds."
    Naira Der-Kiureghian, Ayroum 2003, CA, USA

  • "...I know that when I reflect back on this experience I will feel ecstatic about the work we accomplished, the things we saw, and the bonds we forged."
    Hovig Saghdejian, Ayroum 2003, California, USA

  • "Dolma is made with mum's careful instructions, grandmothers eyes found on the faces of children, songs of Ararat are as familiar as the Khachkars dotting the landscape. If it smells like home, looks like home then it must be home."
    Datevig Simonian, Shadvan 2004, California, USA

  • "LCO experience was a revelation for me. It gave me the opportunity to expand my horizons both personally and professionally. One of the most important experiences of my life and an important factor in determining my future goals."
    Lara Aharonian, August 1999, August 2001, Montreal, Canada.

  • "I formed strong bonds with my volunteers, and the difference in backgrounds was refreshing. It was interesting to hear the points of view of different Armenians from other areas of the Diaspora."
    Aramazt Kalaydjian, Shoushi 2003, NY, USA

  • "I loved the simplicity of life in the village, the fresh homemade food is wonderful; that people are the friendliest and most hospitable... the children have the most beautiful faces..."
    Sophia Balakian, Shadvan 2004, New York, USA