Fifty-year-old Armen Kazaryan is well known among the residents of Kapan, a city of 43,000 in Armenia’s Syunik region. Armen may be nearly blind, but says that his vision problem does not obstruct him from working all day, every day, every week. In fact, Armen has proven far-sighted in recognizing Syunik’s untapped potential in sustainable ecotourism. In 2015 he founded Ark Armenia, a non-governmental organization focusing on ecological issues, with 47-year-old Siranush Vardanyan, who serves as the environmental NGO’s chairwoman. That same year, the husband and wife team launched a project to promote sustainable ecotourism in Kapan.
A Green Island Amid the Mines
Armenia's long standing taboos on open discussions about sexual harassment and violence cracked in July after a journalist, Lucy Kocharyan, turned her Facebook page into a platform for people to speak out about their own experiences of sexual abuse as minors and as adults.