I want you to think about our soldiers, who at this precise moment are guarding our borders in freezing cold under the constant threat of sniper fire. Our soldiers won’t be drinking champagne tonight in the comfort of their warm homes surrounded by their family and friends. As they do on any other freezing winter day and night, on this New Year Day they will be making sure that the people of Armenia and Artsakh can celebrate the holiday and go to sleep in peace. Let’s take a moment tonight and raise a glass to them as well as to all of our sons and daughters, brothers and sisters who gave their lives during the Artsakh Liberation War so that Artsakh becomes an inseparable part of Armenia again.
Armenia Fund, Inc., U.S. Western Region
Having concluded the preliminary data analysis of the Thanksgiving Day Telethon held November 28th, 2013, Armenia Fund U.S. Western Region (Hayastan All-Armenian Fund’s U.S. Western Region affiliate) is pleased to report that $22.7 million dollars was raised globally.
Armenia Fund U.S. Western Region also recorded a growth in the total number of donors and the overall amount of pledges. A total of $2 million was pledged in the Western U.S. compared to last year’s $1.5 million. Mr. Antranik Baghdassarian, Owner and CEO of Karoun Dairies (Major Los Angeles Partner of Telethon 2013) and volunteer Armenia Fund President, pledged $275,000, matching contributions during 2 hours of the live Telethon and underwriting a number of Armenia Fund functions throughout the year.
Proceeds from the 16th International Telethon will benefit the construction of the strategically important Vardenis-Martakert Highway, linking the northern regions of Armenia and the Nagorno Karabakh Republic. The project has already commenced with engineering works starting as of December 2013.
“I want to thank each and every donor of Armenia Fund as well as all Diaspora organizations that stood by this monumental effort. Our strength is in our unity. Armenia and Artsakh are our national Homeland and we have a special opportunity in our modern day history to help Armenia survive and flourish in a very unfriendly neighborhood. With all the challenges along the way, Armenia and Artsakh are developing and moving forward steadily. The land and the people are unequivocally close to my heart and I will continue my support regardless of anything…it’s that simple,” stated Mr. Baghdssarian.
Armenia Fund, Inc. would like to extend its gratitude to the greater Armenian-American community as well as global Armenian communities for making 2013 a successful year for the Fund. Regardless of where our donors and general public stand politically or religiously, we as a global Diaspora once more proved that despite our differences we are able to unite and help make the Homeland a better place to live.
Below is the initial list of pledges by country breakdown as of December 2013.
Russian Federation $12,350,000
U.S. Western Region $2,000,000
European Phonethon: France, Germany,Switzerland, Netherlands, Greece, Belgium $1,984,000
U.S. Eastern Region $1,000,000
Canada (Toronto) $225,000
Canada (Montreal) $120,000
Great Britain $100,000