On 24 May 2022, UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, jointly with the UN family, held an official opening ceremony of the UNHCR Goris Field Unit office premises in the Verishen settlement of the host community of Goris.
The ceremony was attended by the Deputy Governor of Syunik, Mr. Hayk Harutyunyan; the Mayor of Sisian, Mr. Armen Hakobjanyan; a member of the Goris community council, Ms. Irina Yolyan; the UN Resident Coordinator a.i. in Armenia, Ms. Lila Pieters Yahia; representatives of the European Union; other UN agency representatives, officials from state and local authorities, community-based agencies and the civil society; as well as displaced women and representatives of the local community. Field office representatives from the Human Rights Defender’s Office, ICRC, Armenian Caritas, World Vision, People in Need, Armenian Red Cross Society, and other agencies were present at the event as well.
After the ribbon-cutting ceremony, the Deputy Governor of Syunik welcomed the guests and congratulated UNHCR on their new office premises, and on behalf of the community expressed appreciation to the UN for their continuous generous support. He particularly acknowledged UNHCR’s timely and effective humanitarian response activities targeting the displaced families from Nagorno-Karabakh and expressed his solidarity with the displaced people living in the host community of Syunik.
During her welcoming remarks, the UN Resident Coordinator a.i. expressed her appreciation to the Goris community, the territorial administration of Syunik, the UN agencies and partners for the joint humanitarian response highlighting the importance of partnership and collaboration in solving the issues by offering sustainable solutions to the displaced families and the host communities. “The UN stands together with the host communities, determined to ease their burden-sharing by ensuring development activities, protection of human rights, gender equality and capacity development leading to strong communities and sustainable opportunities accessible for” said Ms. Pieters Yahia.
Thanking the community for their hospitality and support by providing UNHCR/UN with the office premises, the UNHCR Representative in Armenia, Ms. Öst said, “The UN family and its partner organisations joined their efforts to support Goris and other host communities, providing a wide range of humanitarian assistance to displaced families followed by community support and capacity-building of community-based NGOs. UNHCR is determined to continue to help the families and the communities, including one of the most hospitable and essential host communities in Armenia as Goris and the entire Syunik region.”
The opening ceremony was followed by the UN delegation’s meetings with the representatives of the territorial administration and the local authorities and visits to the UNHCR and UN supported project sites, such as the newly constructed playground and sport pitch in Goris and community-based organisations in Goris and Sisian: Goris Women’s Development Resource Centre Foundation, Goris Youth Center NGO, The Sun of Syunik NGO, Partnership and Teaching NGO, and Sisian Adult Education Centre, for observation of their activities in progress, and talks with the displaced women, children and youth accessing their projects.