17 July 2022: Week to Week by Armenia Media with Shahen Araboghlian Features Armenian-Australian Repat, Anaheed Sarian

By Shahen Araboghlian – Armenia Media | Monday, 18 July 2022

Week to Week / ՇԱԲԱԹԷ ՇԱԲԱԹ

By Shahen Araboghlian – Exclusively for Armenia Media

From Sydney to Gyumri – Meet Anaheed Sarian

Gyumri’s now home to 29-year-old Anaheed who moved to Armenia almost a year and a half ago. Through volunteering programs with Birthright Armenia for six months, she now has settled in the second-largest city of Armenia.

Initially, Anaheed helped out local communities by teaching skills such as design, sewing, pattern-making, constructing garments out of upcycled materials, and so much more. She also helped out small businesses and organisations with marketing and social media management to increase their both domestic and international outreach.

“I worked on a fashion show with Aregak Centre, a centre for kids with special needs,” Anaheed tells me, “we made outfits out of the textile and colours they wanted [...] and helped them with movements suitable to the needs of their physical movement.” Sarian’s graduated with a Bachelor’s in Design of Fashion and Textile from the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), so putting her expertise into practice has been a dream of hers for a while.

Once she felt like she belonged in Gyumri, her potential connections were endless. She’s now friends with designers, artists, and craft-makers; it is now her community.

She now works with Eksy Leathergoods for most of 2022, a footwear and accessories company based in Gyumri. She works on designing some products using sustainable materials native to the province of Shirak and leftover materials from shoe-making.

Among the challenges she’s faced include language barriers, especially with the influx of Russian migrants since the outbreak of the war. Anaheed, though, enjoys the challenge and uses it to her advantage to learn and grow. If anything, she’s grateful to be working in a community she’s grown to love and giving through an industry she’s an expert in.

Aside from design, she’s helped artists sell their products by getting the word out because she wants their talent to become their full-time career. She voluntarily markets, sells, bootstraps and scale leverages for individual artists, trying to give them an Armenia-wide approach and then international. They now have new customers on a weekly basis, aside from the loyal customers.

A fun fact about Anaheed would be that she’s the first woman in recent Gyumri history to have designed a cocktail menu and ran a bar herself, which she sometimes does at a local pub on weekdays. Her specialties include gin-infused cocktails and she plans to expand to Armenian brandy-based drinks next.

Opposition Political Prisoner Collapses & Dies in Court

According to multiple news sources, film producer and opposition political prisoner charged with “inciting anti-national rhetoric” by the NSS Armen Grigoryan collapsed and died on live cam during a court session early Saturday morning.

The court session was a preliminary hearing session for the criminal case against Armen Grigoryan. His lawyer confirmed his death hours later at a public opposition later and called PM Pashinyan a “murderer” (martasban).

More updates on this to follow.

Notable News:

Image caption: Millenia-old obsidian flake found at the Ararat 1 cave (image by Ellery Frahm/Twitter).

  • President of European Commission Ursula von der Leyen to visit Azerbaijan.

  • First half of 2022 sees an increase of 31% in Artsakh birth rates.

  • Armenian and Azerbaijani MFAs to meet in Tbilisi. This comes a week after Erdogan and Pashinyan hold a phone call for the first time.

  • MHP leader and Erdogan ally was gifted a map of Turkey by the Grey Wolves that includes many islands that fall under Greek sovereignty.

  • Pensions in Armenia to be increased by 6,000 AMD ($22 AUD) starting in 2023.

  • Interior Ministry and Foreign Intelligence Agency to be established in Armenia soon.

  • 45,000-year-old Obsidian flake from an ancient weapon found in Armenia by Yale researcher.

  • Receiving Armenian citizenship is about to get harder for diaspora Armenians.

  • ARF Bureau member denied entry into Armenia.

  • POTUS Biden visits the Armenian church in Bethlehem.

  • US Congress passes four ANCA-backed Armenia/Artsakh amendments.

  • Russian ambassador to Azerbaijan visits Shushi. This is the first ambassador of the three OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs (France, the US) to make an official visit to Shushi.

Multimedia Corner

Image caption: Did you know that one of the producers of Star Wars, Howard Kazanjian, was inspired by the Zvartnots Soviet structure when working with George Terry? (Image by Roger Allen).

  • Read: How much do you know about the Soviet Zvartnots tower? Read all about it here.

  • Listen: Sari Sirun Yar by Carahunge Band. That’s all. Listen to it here.

  • Learn: Learn how to dance Kochari with the Children of Armenia Fund right here.

  • Watch: Tumanyan’s famous Anush Opera can be found on YouTube, performed by the Armenian National Philharmonic Orchestra. Watch part one here and part two here.