Yerevan is not just environmentally deteriorated; the city dust is a hazardous for health and a research center has detected the ‘local peculiarities’ of air pollution.
When Breathing is Dangerous
Vardan Hovhannisyan is the only flower vendor who sells flowers in Yerevan on motorbikes. Vardan has been both sells and presents flowers on the streets of the city since he was 8. Many people in Yerevan know him by the writing on his bike 'Vardan’s Roses'.
The Lord of the Roses
Each year many Armenian farmers are deprived of their only source of income-their harvest and crops, because of frost, hail and bad weather conditions. Many farmers are in desperate need of agricultural insurance and ready to pay the fee. But the risks involved hold the insurers back.
Alone Against the Forces of Nature
Viken Philipossian is a Syrian Armenian. Three years ago, he moved to Armenia with his family because of the war. Viken lost all his businesses in Aleppo and had to start his life from ground zero. In Yerevan he opened a small business, a fast food spot called Tawouk. He spends 16 hours a day in these 30 square meters.
Starting Life From Zero
In recent years, medical abortions have become widespread across Armenia. Doctors say that although medical abortions are preferable to the surgical method, still, the wrong dosage or improper intake can have a negative impact on women's health.
Restricted Abortion Pills Still Available
There is a tradition in the South Caucasus for a girl to be a virgin when she gets married. However, some future brides have to see a doctor to keep this tradition, thus hymen reconstruction surgery has gained popularity in recent years.
Virgins, Doctors and Traditions
26-year-old Seda was born a year prior to Armenia's independence. Seda is a citizen who has continued the unfinished job of her parents; she supports the development of independent Armenia via civil engagement.
A Continued Fight of Independence
A year ago Nikolay, Laura and Davit started to create torches and other home decor accessories in their garage - their design studio is called ‘Dzzz’. Although they don’t have much money, due to their creativity and purposefulness, their products have recieved recognition and are high in demand.
Dzzz: A Crafted Dream
Women at the steering wheel do not have it easy in Armenia - in people's mind they simply cannot drive properly. Although the number of female drivers is steadily increasing, reaching around 45,000 car and license owners, stereotypes are hard to fade. Tatev Hovhannisyan, 28, purchased her first car in 2016: she is determined to change this mindset and is launching a blog about her driving experience as a guide for other women drivers.
Heels and Wheels
Spotting Indian nationals around Yerevan is not unusual. Every year hundreds of Indians enroll in the country’s universities: about 1,000 Indian students were registered at the Yerevan State Medical University in 2016. After graduation however they all head back home. Santosh Arora Kumar arrived in Yerevan 30 years ago, and never left. She married an Armenian, she settled, bringing up five children and making the point of being an ambassador of her country’s culture. She is an Armenian citizen today.
One-way Ticket from India to Armenia
They’re just 16 years old, but Armenian programmers Rafael Sahakyan and Sargis Yeghoyan already have helped create a gadget they hope will help put their hometown of Gyumri on the world’s IT map. Working with Sahakyan’s father, electrical engineer Khachik Sahakyan, and other experts at the town’s Armenian Green Technology Center, the teenagers have developed an all-in-one system to control a house’s lighting, heating, ventilation, air-conditioning and security systems via a smartphone and an internet connection.
Armenia: Getting Smart about Smartphones
Liana took her sex education at school with a pinch of salt - she knew there was more to it, but did not expect it to come from her teacher. The name of the course itself was not a thrilling introduction - “healthy lifestyle” could pretty much be about anything but sex - and it was. “It was taught by the teacher of physical education,” smiles Liana (not her real name), a 17-year old who graduated from a public school in Armenia’s capital Yerevan. “She would bring in the manual, read the lesson aloud, and nobody would listen. I remembered we covered the topics of HIV-AIDS slightly, as well as personal hygiene [e.g. washing carefully the genitalia]. We would just sit there and kind-of listen to her and ask no questions. And if we had questions, we would not ask them, as we would be shy to do so in front of everyone.”
Let’s (Not) Talk About Sex in Armenia
Azatuhi Hovhannisyan’s regular commute is 300-metres long. Everyday the 52-year-old geography teacher takes two buckets from her house, walks to the loose pipe down the road, fills them, and walks back. She has done this many times a day, for the last 25 years.
Safe Drinking Water, A Dream From Armenia
Armenian women have had the right to an abortion since 1955. But a strong taboo against premarital sex means single women face illegal restrictions and, at times, even abuse, from doctors when they ask for an abortion.Women's rights specialists like Anush Poghosyan note that female patients are often judged by doctors and nurses, resulting in discrimination and, at times, unprofessional or inadequate medical treatment.