During the four-day fundraising event, close to 650 volunteers in five French cities – Paris, Lyon, Marseille, Nice, and Montpellier – called Armenian households and businesses throughout Europe, asking them to support the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund’s current and forthcoming development projects in Artsakh and Armenia. The raised funds will be used for developing rural communities in Armenia and Artsakh.
On the first two days of the Phoneathon, volunteers appealed mainly to Armenian organizations and Armenian-owned businesses, while the last leg of the event was dedicated to rallying the grassroots.
“It’s truly impressive to see so many hundreds of fellow Armenians come together under one banner, in a united and powerful effort to help foster the development of their homeland,” Ara Vardanyan said, commenting on his participation in the Phoneathon.
According to the chairman of Fund’s French Affiliate Bedros Terzian “The commitment made by around 12 400 families is the best demonstration of dedication for the homeland. This is the result of every single person’s free choice rather than their obligation.”
Although the Phoneathon is organized mainly by the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund’s French affiliate, it is in fact a genuinely pan-European effort uniting Armenian communities across the continent, given the full participation of the fund’s German, and Switzerland affiliates. Accordingly, the Phoneathon’s volunteer corps includes many Armenians from Germany and Switzerland.
It should be noted that Orange France Telecom, the major sponsor of the phoneathon, has bean providing significant infrastructure and technical support to this principal fundraising event for years. Orange allocated a special telephone number for collecting donations. It also sent out special SMS messages to 50 thousand subscribers on behalf of the French singer of Armenian origin Hélène Ségara with an urge to participate in “Phonethon”.