|Vegetable and Flower Seeds to Needy Families
HDP through cooperation with UMCOR, has been executing vegetable
and flower seed distribution for the last two years. The seeds help the rural
poor, farmersí associations and demonstration farms.
HDP is working with rural populations to help them sustain themselves, as
well as provide them opportunities for income generation and economic growth.
The purpose of this activity is to help rural people in Armenia produce healthy
food, sustain themselves and also develop certain farming skills.
1 ton of seeds for 2003. HDP distributed these seeds in different regions
of Armenia benefiting about 1,600 rural families, orphanages, ARDA-supported
kindergartens in Gumri area, nursing homes and non-government organizations
(NGO). In 2004, Volunteers spent two months sorting mixed seeds from 50 kg
bags into separate sacks for each kind of seed. Their help was very much needed
for timely distribution of seeds.
As a follow up to the last yearís seed distribution, HDP executed distribution
of one ton of vegetable and flower seeds to over 2144 families in Armenia,
in April-June 2004. This year the work began earlier, February 23, because
we had lots of varieties and time was essential to sort the seeds out.
lived through difficult times for centuries, the women have always been very
actively involved in making that process smoother and less painful. This time
too, a group of women were working in Charbakh warehouse: it was very cold
there, lacking elementary work conditions. Nevertheless, our women proved
that even in those conditions they can work, sort the seeds out, and also
acquire new friends, joke with each other and enjoy themselves.
The Red Cross
volunteers, schoolchildren, headed by Lusia, also greatly supported this very
We started the UMCOR-donated seed distribution in HDPís modest office. Red
Cross volunteer-friends came again to help us.[Red Cross 004.] We first, verified
the list of seed beneficiaries from last year, and then informed them about
the availability of vegetable and flower seeds. We didnít have to wait long:
representatives from Hrazdan and Ararat visited us with their volunteers and
with our assistance made family bags for their communities. [Seeds 2004 004.]
The number of communities who wanted seeds grew and we were happy to extend
our assistance to Shirak, Noyemberian, Gegharkunik, Armavir, Tavush, Lori,
Kotaik, Aragotsotn, and Syunik. Itís also worth mentioning Peace Corps Volunteers
who helped us locate beneficiary communities and number of families needing
the seeds. Amongst them were Christopher Deel, Brian Raimond, Susan Bradly,
Mathew Soniat, Colleen Hardy, May Jirgensons, etc.
After the seeds
were distributed, we then collected information to see if the seeds were planted.
To our greatest happiness, all varieties were planted and people were particularly
pleased with cucumber, cabbage, beans, eggplant, tomatoes, pepper and corn
seeds growth. People were happy and many brought Thank You letters to our
office. We were also happy that a lot of gardens will be beautified from planted
flowers that will warm peopleís hearts. The picture to the right shows some
of Perkutyun NGO harvest.
To date, over 2144 families have received seeds. Our goal is to provide healthy
food to needy in Armenia. After the seeds were distributed, we then collected
information to see if the seeds were planted. To our greatest happiness, all
varieties were planted and people were particularly pleased with cucumber,
cabbage, beans and corn seeds growth. We are also happy that a lot of gardens
will be beautified from planted flowers that will warm peopleís hearts.
One of the goals of HDP is also to promote volunteerism in Armenia. In an
economically challenged country it is a bit difficult, but we think that we
can achieve a lot step by step.
As a result of this project we decided to start the Mittleider High Yielding
program in Armenia, which has the advantage that families can produce their
product close to home so security is less of a problem than on more extensive