Ararat Avanesyan was one of the first freedom fighters to voluntarily join the Artsakh Liberation War of the early 90s. 25 years ago, at the age of twenty two, he was heavily wounded in the field of battle, losing one leg and facing a number of health difficulties since. Now, with his wife and 3 teenage daughters, he lives in Artsakh's Askeran region, in a small village called Patara.
Until recently, his beautiful family had no home of their own and had to take up residence in relatives' homes. After risking his life and sacrificing his health for the freedom of our homeland, Ararat faced financial struggles and lived in housing conditions that were detrimental to the safety and well-being of his family. Like many of his brothers in arms who found themselves in a similar situation after the war, Ararat's injuries made him unable to work to purchase a new home. As a result, his family endured homelessness for many years.
But not any longer.
It is due to the courage and sacrifice of soldiers like Ararat that our homeland is now free. Supporting these soldiers is an essential duty for all of us, with which we express our everlasting gratitude to the brave sons of Artsakh.
This is the 9th housewarming celebrated in Artsakh in the framework of our Housing for Wounded Soldiers initiative. Aimed at supporting soldiers in difficult housing situations, the initiative was launched in April 2016, in response to the Four Day War. Since then, with funds raised during the 2016 emergency appeal and through additional support from individual donors, 9 houses have been built, reconstructed or purchased for Artsakh's wounded soldiers.
Though initially intended to support soldiers of the April War, the project was later expanded to include Artsakh's wounded soldiers with urgent housing needs, regardless of which war they were injured in. Avanesyan is the 3rd soldier of the 90s Liberation War to benefit from the project. The geography of the project was also expanded during the past 2 years, ranging from large towns like Stepanakert and Hadrut to small, remote villages in Artsakh's borderlands.
We are grateful to the New York St. Illuminator Cathedral's Zarukian Fund and Ralph Yirikian, General Manager of VivaCell-MTS, for helping us make one more family's dream come true. This support inspires us to continue our efforts with added commitment and dedication.
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