Gamo Davtian, a soldier wounded in the Artsakh Liberation War in the early nineties, August 11th celebrated housewarming in the Village of Nor Shen, Martuni region, Artsakh. The house was rebuilt by the Tufenkian Foundation, in the framework of the Housing for Wounded Soldiers initiative. Tufenkian Foundation Executive Director Mr. Raffi Doudaklian, representatives of the Martuni Regional Administration, ARF Meroujan Mosiyan Committee and local media, as well as members of the Nor Shen community attended the housewarming.
Since 2003, the Tufenkian Foundation has implemented a number of projects and initiatives in support of Artsakh. In April 2016, in response to the Four Day War, the Foundation launched an urgent appeal to help the people affected by the war. Since then, with funds raised during this emergency appeal and through additional support from individual donors, the Foundation provided housing support to six soldiers: three in Martakert, two in Hadrut and one in Askeran.
While the initiative was launched with the aim of supporting soldiers injured in the Four Day War, it was later expanded to include soldiers with housing needs who have been injured in battle and are not able to repair their homes or purchase new ones. “Every soldier who has risked his life for our homeland deserves a dignified living, and that is not possible without a decent home. By building, renovating or purchasing houses for the soldiers of Artsakh, we not only honor and support these brave individuals and their families, but we also help rebuild Artsakh, one house at a time”, TF Executive Director Raffi Doudaklian stated during the housewarming ceremony.
Gamo Davtian is the seventh soldier to receive a fully renovated house from the Tufenkian Foundation and the second soldier of the 90’s liberation war to benefit from the initiative. During the war, Gamo joined the Nor Shen self-defense group, where he fought bravely and was heavily injured in one of the battles.
Gamo is 50 years old. A hardworking man by nature, he is now unable to do physical work because of the injury sustained in battle. He lives in Nor Shen together with his wife and two daughters. Following his father’s footsteps, Gamo’s son has joined the Artsakh Army and serves his country as an officer.
Prior to the renovations, Gamo and his family lived in an old village house, which was not only in overall poor condition, but also had no kitchen or an indoor bathroom. In addition to general repairs, the Foundation has constructed an adjacent building, thus expanding the house and adding a fully renovated kitchen, bathroom, as well as a corridor.
In his remarks during the housewarming ceremony, Gamo Davtian said, “I am happy to finally have a home we will be proud to live in. My only wish is that all my friends who have fought in the war have a place they can call home and a decent roof over their heads”.
Although the 2016 emergency has ended, the housing need for Artsakh’s soldiers is still a pending issue. With many wounded/disabled soldiers requiring similar assistance, the Foundation will continue this work in the foreseeable future.
About the Tufenkian Foundation
The Tufenkian Foundation was launched in 1999 by entrepreneur James Tufenkian with the mission to empower the initiatives of local citizens, support the most vulnerable strata of the society, promote environmental protection and awareness, and advance social justice in Armenia. Since 2003, the Foundation has broadened its scope to embattled Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabagh), where it promotes resettlement and development projects in the vulnerable border zones of the region.