The ARS Central Executive Board’s Annual Raffle drawing took place on Sunday, March 23, 2014 at the ARS Central office in Watertown, Massachusetts. Present for the drawing were all eleven members of the Central Executive Board who were in Boston to attend the CEB’s plenary meeting.

The Armenian Relief Society, Inc. (ARS, Inc.) completed another successful series of events as part of the 58th Annual Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) Conference which was held at the United Nations from March 10-21, 2014. The ARS, Inc. has been actively involved as an NGO at the United Nations since 1976, but since 1998 has been a consultative member on the Roster of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations.

In its 22nd plenary meeting, held March 20-24, 2014 in Boston, Massachusetts, the Armenian Relief Society Central Executive Board discussed various functions being planned for the 100th Commemoration of the Armenian Genocide in 2015. In addition, as part of its full humanitarian agenda, the Central Executive Board focused particular attention on assistance projects for the Syrian-Armenian community.

This internationally celebrated day — March 8 — is by no means a recent event. Over a century ago, International Women’s Day brought together the women of the Western world to make their voices heard, united under the banner of their demands for equal rights. Indeed, it was in 1908 in New York City, that around 1,500 women demonstrated, carrying placards demanding a reduction of working hours, better pay and the right to vote. They marched in the streets of the same city, where only two years later, through the efforts of a young revolutionary named Aknuni, a vibrant organization of dedicated Armenian women came to life, a humanitarian society that would become a world-wide network of benevolent activity under the name of “Armenian Relief Society”.

The first stage of the Armenian Relief Society Central Executive’s “Warm House” program was implemented on Saturday, February 8, 2014 through the efforts of its entities around the world to provide aid for Armenians in Syria.

The Armenian Relief Society, Inc., as an ECOSOC- accredited non-governmental organization (NGO), is again participating and hosting multiple panel discussions at this year’s United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW). The panel discussions will incorporate this year’s priority theme for CSW, which is “Challenges and Achievements in the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals for Women and Girls.” In addition to the priority theme, the review theme this year is “Access and Participation of Women and Girls to Education, Training, Science and Technology, including for the promotion of women’s equal access to full employment and decent work.”

The Central Executive Board of the Armenian Relief Society is pleased to announce that the ARS Central Office Financial Department will henceforth be named in honor of Mr. Hrair Soghomonian’s mother, “Ungh. Manoushag Soghomonian”. A plaque will be placed at the entrance of that department in gratitude for our esteemed benefactor’s generous donation of $15,000 in honor of his mother.

On June 9, 2013, the dedicating and naming ceremony for the Executive Director’s office in honor of its benefactor was held in the presence of the ARS CEB Executive members and the staff of the ARS, Inc. Central Office.

In May, while on a five-day visit to Lebanon, the Chairperson of the UN’s Commission on the Status of Women (NGO/CSW NY), Soon Young Yoon, was invited to visit the “Araxie Boulghourjian” Socio-Medical Center and meet with ARS/Lebanon’s Regional Executive board. Considering the participation of the ARS Inc. in UN/CSW NY meetings and panel discussions, and its close cooperation with international NGOs, Yoon’s invitation was extended to her by the Central Executive Board.

The Armenian Relief Society participated in the United Nation’s 57th Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) in New York, from March 4-15, 2013. CSW, a functional commission of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), is “the principal global policy-making body dedicated exclusively to gender equality and advancement of women”. The theme of this year’s CSW was “Elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls”. Approximately six thousand women from all over the world registered to attend the CSW57 events.


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