One of the most important and impactful parts of our Child Poverty Reduction Program is its healthcare component, which recently enabled several more children in need of medical care to access the right treatment. This program is implemented solely in Ararat Province.

Eight-year-old Andranik Yervandyan from Ayntap Village in Ararat Province is currently being treated at Arabkir Medical Complex in Yerevan. For years he had complained of abdominal pains, but due to the unaffordability of proper healthcare his parents were not able to take him to see a doctor. With help from the Poverty Reduction Program, Andranik is undergoing three-days of examinations as doctors decide how best to treat him.

“I always wanted to take him to the doctor. I even tried to take him to the hospital but my husband is also sick. I have been waiting for him to recover and return to work so that we could afford it. We need at least 20,000 drams (about USD 40) a day to pay for his treatment,” said Andranik’s mother Arusyak, who added that she was very happy when their local physician informed her that the boy could be examined and, if necessary, receive treatment through FAR’s program. “I am sure that everything will be done properly and the problem will be solved now,” she said. Her husband works in construction, and his family, with whom they live, cultivates vegetables and vineyards to earn living. Agriculture is the main source of income for many of Ararat’s villagers, specifically for viticulture.

Hayk Petrosyan, 13, from Norashen Village is also being treated at Arabkir Medical Complex. His mother Alina has said that situation for the villagers is terrible and FAR’s program is a great help to then. She had been waiting eight years to be able to bring their child in the hospital for a full examination.

Within the program’s health component children under age 18 with health problems for which treatment is not covered by the government’s basic benefit package, are offered complete examination and treatment following discussions with local physicians.

Eight-year-old Hrach Markosyan’s chronic health problems, which include abdominal pain, headaches and vomiting, are also not covered by the basic benefit package.

“His condition became worse in February,” said Hrach’s mother Lusine. “Our doctor said he had problems with his biliary system and prescribed him drugs. Honestly, we could not afford a thorough examination from a good specialist. So, whenever he had pain we just gave him the medicine.”

The examination, which was done at the hospital in May, indicated that Hrach had gastric mucosa inflammation.

“Now, he is receiving proper treatment. I feel the difference and the improvement, even after just one week,” Lusine said.

Nine-year-old Milena Karapetyan is currently undergoing her treatment in the Ophthalmology Department at Qanaker-Zeytun Medical Center to improve her vision. For several days she has been playing a computer game with her left eye closed to strengthen and improve the vision in her right eye.

“She strengthens her eye, and as a result her vision improves,” said Magda Grigoryan, the nurse who is working with Milena.

Melina likes the game and the therapy. She lives with her grandparents and her uncle in Arbat Village in Ararat, since she did not want to leave for Russia with her mother.

“She tells me she loves Armenia,” said Milena’s grandmother, 54-year-old Karine Sargsyan, who is a nurse for the healthcare ambulance in their village. Even though she is the family’s sole breadwinner, she is was still unable to afford treatment for her granddaughter. Now, thanks to the Child Poverty Reduction Program Milena can get help.

“She studies hard at school; she is a role model,” Karine said with pride. “We are very grateful to your organization and the donors for helping my granddaughter.”

The program is supported by the Arpine and Arda Hovnanian Fund.