FAR’s Mardigian Children’s Support Center in Berd recently held a weekend retreat for the 30 children currently supported by the Center. The retreat was aimed to help them boost their social and analytical skills through sports, intellectual games, performances, debates and other activities.

This was the first time the Center held such an activity. A relatively new institution in the region, the Center helps children and youth typically between the ages of 6 and 16 to grapple with some of the issues they might be struggling with, like family problems, poor self-esteem, self-doubt or anxiety, through special programs and counseling.

“The children summed up the knowledge they had acquired throughout the summer and developed team thinking. They also improved their attitudes toward the environment and green practices,” said Center Psychologist Marieta Manucharyan. Many of the children who came had spent time at the Center over the summer engaging in its art therapy and outdoor activities.

Children also wrote down the “rules” for their own lives, like treating others kindly, staying focused, and helping others in need, for example.

“We learned that we shouldn’t fight with each other but help and support one another. We should listen to elders and be respectful of them,” said participant 10-year-old Seda.