Friday, 15 December

Embracing Innovation: “Green” Solutions to Improve Life in Shirak’s Haykavan Village


19 disadvantaged families in Haykavan, a village in Armenia’s northwestern Shirak Province, are participating in a project to grow raspberries to supplement their meager incomes.

People are impatient to start the project, but they still must find a donor organization to fund it.

The Green Trail NGO came up with the idea of growing raspberries in Haykavan.

Haykavan Mayor Samvel Mkhoyan says that if money is found in time, each family will cultivate a 1,000-square meter plot.

He’s says there’s an old building in the village that can be renovated and used for a refrigeration unit and storage space.

Located on the banks of the Akhouryan River separating Armenian and Turkey, at an elevation of 1,550 meters above sea level, most of Haykavan’s 1,300 residents either grow crops or raise livestock. Large amounts of cauliflower have been grown here in the last 6-7 years.

Karapet Mouradyan has grown cauliflower in Russia and in his native Haykavan. He says it’s not the most profitable of crops to grow, but that ultimately, it depends on the market and the weather. He says that growing cauliflower is quite labor intensive and doesn’t have a long shelf life.

A young Haykavan farmer, who wished to remain anonymous, says the market for locally grown cauliflower is spotty. He said that just the other day he transported 400 kilograms of cauliflower to Vanadzor and was forced to sell it all for 25,000 AMD. He didn’t want to have to bring it back and spoil.

Mayor Mkhoyan says that Shirak residents rarely used cauliflower in their cooking. It’s mainly used for pickling.

He says the main problem faced by farmers in Armenia is selling their crops, and that the government must step in to ensure that whatever is grown is eventually sold. The government must also assist rural communities to improve their anti-hail systems.

Haykavan has three anti-hail stations. Two were installed in 2007, and the other in 2014. Mkhoyan says another station must be installed along the border since most of the hail generating clouds blow in from Turkey.

Haykavan’s budget is 32 million AMD, of which 9 million derives from local taxes and other revenues. The rest is in the form of state subsidies.

This year, Haykavan was selected to participate in a project run by the Green Energy in the Name of Green Socio-Economic Progress NGO. The community’s kindergarten was outfitted with a solar water heater. They also installed a photovoltaic system in the yard.

The total cost of the project was 2.320 million AMD. The Haykavan Municipality allocated 960,000 AMD and Green Energy invested the rest.

Mayor Mkhoyan says they want to increase the power output from 3.5 to 5.5 kilowatts, but that it will take another 450,000 AMD that the community doesn’t have. The Shirak Provincial Administration rejected the community’s request for financial assistance.

Two important issues that need immediate resolution in Haykavan are finishing the installation of a natural gas distribution system, that began in 2009, and renovating the cultural center. 52 million AMD was spent to get the gas pipe to the outskirts of the village, and it will take another 70 million to pipe the gas to the houses.

The Haykavan Municipality is located on the second floor of the cultural center built in the 1970s. In 2005, the cost to renovate the center was estimated at 70 million AMD.

“I wrote to the Ministry of Urban Construction last year and asked that those plans drawn up in 2005 be handed over to us for amending. We have them but haven’t made any amendments. The renovation will probably cost an additional 10 million. If we find 80 million AMD somewhere, we’ll have a functional building that can house the municipal offices as well as the library, entertainment space and a 300-seat auditorium,” the mayor says.

The cultural center (renamed the community center) also needs new furnishings.
There’s a suitable space on the first floor that the mayor would like to allocate to the local Haykavan children’s dance group once the place is renovated.

“Now, given that there’s a policy of clustering villages into larger communities, it would be advisable to return to the notion of having a cultural center so that we can benefit from all possibilities. That is, of course, if the place is ever renovated,” says the mayor.

Mayor Mkhoyan says that he and the village mayors of Arapi, Voskehask and Akhourik, near the Akhouryan River, have filed a request with the government to have their villages clustered.

“They said they would consider our request. Maybe it will be approved. It would be good for our four villages to be clustered since we share the same cultural traditions. We could unite and solve problems together,” says Mayor Mkhoyan.

«Հիմա, որ համայնքների խոշորացում է սպասվում, ու չգիտենք էլ` փնջի կենտրոնը որ գյուղն է լինելու, երեւի նորից վերադարձ կատարենք մշակույթի տուն հասկացությանը, որ կարողանանք լիարժեք օգտագործել հնարավորություններն, եթե իհարկե տարիներ սպասված հիմնանորոգումն իրականացվի»,-շեշտում է համայնքապետը:

Համայնքների խոշորացման ծրագիրը Հայկավան հավանաբար կհասնի հաջորդ տարի: Սամվել Մխոյանն ասում է, որ Ախուրյան գետի հարեւանությամբ գտնվող Առափի, Հայկավան, Ոսկեհասկ եւ Ախուրիկ գյուղերի համայնքապետերով դիմել են կառավարությանը մեկ փնջում միավորվելու համար: «Մեզ ասին, որ հաշվի կառնեն առաջարկը, գուցե եւ հավանության արժանանա, քանի որ ոչ թե ընդհանրապես հրաժարվում ենք, այլ մեր տարբերակն ենք առաջարկում,- բացատրում է Սամվել Մխոյանը,- որովհետեւ էնպես էր ստացվել, որ մենք ընդհանրապես դուրս էինք մնացել փնջերից, բայց եթե պիտի այսպես, թե այնպես միավորեն, ապա գոնե էս 4 գյուղը, որ սահմանակից են, ունեն նույն մշակութային սովորությունները, կարող են առաջացած պրոբլեմները միասին լուծել, իրար հետ միավորեն»:


Home page

Leave a comment
Thank you for your comment. Your comment must be confirmed by the administration.

 
When reprinting or broadcasting any materials from HETQ.am, hyperlink is obligatory.
© 2017 Hetq online: All rights reserved.

About us

Address: 1/3, Str. Buzand, 8th floor,
Yerevan-0010, Republic of Armenia
Tel.: +374 10 563363
E-mail: info@hetq.am

  Made in: