About Armenia | Mission East

About Armenia



Armenia development mapAbout Armenia

Armenia is a small, landlocked country with few natural resources in a historically volatile part of the world. The country experienced a major economic contraction at the end of the 1980s when the effects of a massive earthquake were amplified by the break-up of the Soviet Union and the costs of the conflict with Azerbaijan over Nagorno Karabagh.
 
Armenia’s economy had been growing steadily since 1994, but this has much depended on international aid and remittances from the Diaspora. Due to the recent global financial crisis, however, the Armenian economy retracted drastically because of a sharp decline in external remittances, exports, external investments, and tourism. Poverty grew to more than 35 percent.
 
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Overall, public expenditure for education remains very low and this has caused a deterioration of facilities, lack of modern teaching aids and low teacher salaries added to the insufficiencies of excess capacity and overstaffing of the inherited system. Among others Mission East is working with education i Armenia.
 
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Huge challenges

Over the last ten years, the Armenian government has shown a positive track record on economic management and reform, but still has huge challenges beating corruption and in health, education and disability - the key sectors that Mission East is working in. The health sector is amongst the least funded in the former Soviet countries.
 

Major achievements - 20 years of Mission East in Armenia working with civil society

Major achievements for Mission East have been the development of disability rights laws and signing of international conventions to protect people with disabilities and raising awareness on disability within Armenian society.
 
Building the capacity of civil society forms the core of our Armenia program. We have worked to build the capacity of and implement projects through more than 25 Local NGOs. We also helped establish the Disability Advocacy Coalition, a platform for Armenian disability organisations. We include capacity building elements of national and local governments in all projects, influencing them to adapt and develop policies linked with disability, inclusive education and children’s rights, and other medical and social issues. In addition, our Armenia field office has built good relationships and a strong reputation in rural areas, both with communities and local authorities. These relationships have been built through our long term cooperation on community health and disability project work.
 
Read more about Mission East’s areas of involvement in Armenia here 
 
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